Player Prerequisites

What to Discover or Recall:

Being a true athlete is by no means an easy job. Training is exacting and the responsibility is heavy.

Setting goals not only allows you to take control of your game, it also provides you a benchmark for determining whether you are actually succeeding.

One of the biggest contributions that basketball can provide is the opportunity and motivation for an education.

Motivation is the single most important factor in learning and perfecting basketball skills.

Learning is best when it is fun!

Basketball records are a matter of great personal pride, however, you record as a person is the most important record of all.


| What it Takes | Atmosphere of Greatness | Education & Basketball |


5 Stars

What It Takes to be an Athlete



Personal Rewards


Are you coachable?

Do you have a burning desire to learn? Can you take constructive criticism or are you a "Know it all"? Will you always do your level best to improve? Do you want to improve?

Are you competitive?

Are you possessed with the spirit of competition which fires an intense desire to achieve? Do you want to win, never taking "no" for an answer when there is a job to be done, a rebound to be grabbed, a shot to be stopped, or a basket to be made? Does it bother you to give less than your best effort?

Are you willing to practice?

Not just reporting and putting in the necessary time, but working every day with the same speed and determination you use during a game? Great athletes give their best effort at all times. Too often the lessons that could be learned from the performance of a truly great athlete are overlooked. Too much attention to final records ignores the means by which these records were achieved. Too little is written or told of the years of grueling practice, of the tremendous will to succeed, or of the diligent concentration of fundamentals that lead to excellence.

Are you willing to make sacrifices?

Are you willing to train or are you wasting your time in athletics? Superior conditioning does not just happen nor is acquired quickly. It is a result of a well planned and executed program of exercise, rest and diet. Training is exacting and the responsibility is heavy. It includes personal denials but the rewards are great. The best way to remain in great shape is never to get out of it. "A second rate person can never make a first-class ball player." It is going to be up to you to see that your maximum physical condition is achieved and maintained. Anything less is a violation of trust.

Can you play through adversity?

Do you have the ability to bounce back? Never let bad plays or calls ruin your game? No matter how many times you get knock down, the only time that matters is the time you do not get back up. When you give it your best effort you may run out of time on the clock, but you will never lose a game.

Do you have self control?

As an athlete you must realize that you are in the public spotlight at all times. Your conduct, what you say and do, makes news. This imposes a great need for self control. It is a cinch to find someone to lead you down the wrong path in life. It takes determination to resist the temptations that exist. Just as one works for years to become a top athlete, one should work to develop an image of a person, a pattern of conduct, and standards by which one is known and respected. Do not risk destroying a whole career because of an off the court mistake.

Do you prepare every day to meet the best?

Do you have an ardent desire to improve? Are you willing to practice the things you cannot do more than the things you can do well? Are you willing to put in extra time necessary to perfect a skill or fundamental? Too many players spend their time doing what they already do well, and therefore, never improve.


5 Stars

Atmosphere of Greatness"


Excerpts from a speech given by the late Rev. Bob Richards - Former Olympic Decathlon Champion at at a L.S.U. Basketball Banquet. His astute observations still apply to the great athletes of today.


Goals and Physicality


We are all inclined to accept the thesis that sport is all Physicality, and that athletes are all muscle and bone. However, I am going to prove a different hypothesis. That the world of sport is more determined by thought and goals than anything else. The world of sport is a world of emotion, it's a world of temper and most of all it's a world of ideas.

The French believe that every great man that has ever lived has had a fixed concept, Idee fixe, of what he wants to be. They believe that this fixed goal is the vital determinant of life. I have been in sports for twenty-five years and would like to give you three shocking summaries.

  1. Great athletes will tell you what they're going to do years before they do it.

  2. They predict to a 10th of a second the races that they are going to run or swim.

  3. In most cases it is thought to be impossible. It has not been done in the history of the world.

They have an "idee fixe", a mental process of what they're going to do in life. Billie Jean King, Peggy Fleming, Johnny Bench, Mark Spitz are all examples of great athletes that have predicted their success. I have watched this in athlete after athlete. They tell you what they're going to do long before they do it.

You become like the "Idee fixe" in your brain. You become like the thing you go for. That's why I say go out to be the greatest. In whatever profession you go into, go out to be the best in the world; because you will become like the thing you go after. The great ones go for the impossible. They go for world records.

You are what you think.

The capacity of a person is still unknown. Muscles are capable of 100 times more work than the built-in limiter, the brain, will permit. Every weight lifter will tell you that you must think you can lift the weight before the body can. It is most staggering to realize in this world of so-called "muscle and bone" the mind is the determining thing.

Psychologists studying great people in all walks of life in an attempt to find a common denominator for greatness, cannot agree on anything except a principle called "F.Q." or Failure Quotient. F.Q. is the ability to bounce back. The great ones can be beaten but they bounce back. They do not let an injury or a mistake beat them. You will not be great unless you have F.Q. along with an "Idee Fixe". You have to be beaten to be great.

Champions are not born.

They do not just spring up. If you study every great athlete in this country and in the world you will find that they come from an atmosphere of greatness. They go to a place where there is a coach who thinks great things can happen. They are surrounded by a loved one, sweetheart, friend or someone who says they can be the best in the world.

Study U.C.L.A. psychology of basketball. Hall of Fame Coach John Wooden expected greatness from his players. He expected them to perform to the peak of their efficiency. He expected greatness and the great ones went there - an atmosphere of greatness.

Expect a miracle and it will happen.

You are programmed for success. All of us are over endowed. We have capabilities that we haven't scratched the surface of yet. We have physical powers that we haven't even discovered. We are made to win; and it takes a lot of messing up and wrong thinking to keep you from triumphing in life. Learn from the great game of basketball that you can win in this great game called "living."

To Any Athlete

There are little eyes upon you,
   And they're watching night and day;
There are little ears that quickly
   Take in every word you say;
There are little hands all eager
   To do anything you do;
And a little boy who's dreaming
   Of the day he'll be like you.

You're the little fellow's idol,
   You're the wisest of the wise,
In his little mind about you,
   No suspicious ever rise;
He believes in you devoutly,
   Holds that all you say and do,
He will say and do, in your way
   When he's a grown up like you.

There's a wide eyed little fellow,
   Who believes you're always right,
And his ears are always open,
   And he watches day and night;
You are setting an example
   Every day in all you do,
For the little boy who's waiting
   To grow up and be like you.



5 Stars

Basketball & Education


All too often athletes do not take advantage of this educational opportunity; and, therefore, they do not only waste an invaluable opportunity, they also waste their time. Do not be satisfied by merely meeting the eligibility requirements. Work for a high grade point average and a degree.

Are you willing study?

Basketball was never meant to take the place of studies and the desire to learn. You are in school for an education. Keep that foremost in your thoughts, and place basketball second. Earn the respect of your teachers as well as your coach. If you can't "pass" you can't play. That is true "on" and "off" the court.

Your recruiting chances of playing on a high level of basketball:

Recruiting Chances

Making the Grades. Percentage of schools that can recruit you according to your GPA.


Decision Making


Study Demands:

  1. Emphasis should be on quest and attainment of knowledge, not grades and credits.

  2. Never miss or be late for any class or appointment.

  3. Have regular study hours and keep them.

  4. Get your work in on time and do not fall behind.

  5. If you need extra help in your studies, let your coach know. Most instructors are willing and happy to help, but you must make the first contact.

  6. Take advantage of all the available educational resources (library services, computer labs, reading labs, counseling center, etc.)

  7. When you are to miss school because of basketball, please contact the instructors of the classes you will miss beforehand, and tell them that you will be absent, and request assignments for those dates.

  8. Do not expect favors or special treatment. Do your part. Knowledge is power.


Education Opportunity



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