Thursday, March 31, 2016

Surfs Up, Brah!

"Make sure your worst enemy doesn't live between your own two ears." 
-Laird Hamilton

It's summertime, and my kids are at the beach, while I sit at home with my wife completing household projects. They are at the stretch of beach that saw two shark attacks last week, but who's worried?
Anyway Laird Hamilton expresses his sentiment that goes along with worry. I read an article yesterday that talked about how sitting can be unhealthy for anxiety and stress levels. I came to my own conclusion that it's the inactivity that creates the worry. Once you begin the action of completing the task or are in the moment of the event, you experience the release of the stress.
This quote, of course, alludes to the lack of confidence that can fester in your mind. Can I do this? Will I be embarrassed? Am I tackling something that I can not handle?
The only thing I can tell you is that by failing, you don't fail. You only fail if you give up.
Besides worrying works. 99% of the time I worry, the thing I am worried about never happens.

"60 percent of the time, it works every time."

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

World Series of Yogi Quote

"I think the Little League is wonderful. It keeps the kids out of the house."
-Yogi Berra

          My oldest stepson was a lifelong baseball player who is now in his second year of college. In high school, his team was high achieving and he received accolades for his play statewide. He had an opportunity to play on a small college roster, but his choice of university differed from his baseball opportunities. 
He is older than my younger guy, who you might have read about in earlier blogs, and feels he has outgrown his hometown. My beautiful wife and I attended her alma mater's homecoming recently. As luck would have it, it was fall break for his university leaving him the house for the weekend. 
          Needless to say Yogi's quote struck a comedic heart string. Although, I am fond of the young man, who I really didn't get to know as much as I would like, baseball left us too early. Truthfully, regardless of his university's academic reputation, he may read this, and to say he is not welcome in our home will never be uttered, and I look forward to opportunities that may lend me the chance to get to know him better. (Me and your mother love ya, kid.) Right now, I feel getting to know our local grocer, and handyman may be of more immediate need.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Concussion Rule. The Plea.

          What I have seen in the sports world, although the more that changes the more things stay the same, there are some great advances that I wish I had when I was playing. I intend not to judge others because I never can throw that first stone when it comes to being the one without sin. Although it may have been more, in the '90s I suffered two concussions. I was knocked out for more than 5 minutes each time. Within five minutes of being revived I was ready to play and did. (Please make your comments about how it all makes sense.) Which is why the sacrifices of college and professional athletes do not go unnoticed by myself and I never say that the targeting call in football and the concussion rules are less than
Everyone's tough until they get punched
manly. Mike Tyson said that everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth. The pontification from the champ reminds me that I should try not to judge the calls when it comes to safety because even if it brings fame and fortune, my health is more valuable. Even though it is a warrior that can handle the job, but these warriors today usually have, a; wife and kid, or needs to go to class on Monday, or sometimes both. Also, the idea that you should not play the game if you can not handle the contact is akin to peer pressure when you do not want to drink at the party. I never heard a kid say in practice that he wants to be hit in the head several times until he is knocked unconscious to get ready for the next game.
          The most valuable thing I possess, and maybe others, is my mind. Where the mind goes the body follows, and any damage I may have incurred as an athlete that might lead me to a quicker state of dementia, knock on wood, will be something I pray will be avoided. I get angry when watching a game and I hear the yells from fans calling athletes or referees derogatory terms in regards to their sexuality when they look like there may be a safety issue. I tend to value human life and health a lot even if it is a teenager that needs to catch that pass over the middle to make me happy.
Junior Seau

Friday, March 18, 2016

The Madness' Best

When it is all over the dance in March continues in video. I remember when I watched these games, and I remember the thoughts I had. It would be hard to believe there is a world that does not pay attention to this event, but it has meant so much to me over the years. Not just appreciating the games, but the people that caused these moments to occur. Enjoy the trip down the memory lane.

Thank you +Evan Williams

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

I Was in the Pool!!!!!!!!

The sea was angry that day, my friends. Like an old man trying to send soup back in a deli.

For the last few months I have been trying to train for a swim meet event in December. Yes a 42 year old man training for a swim meet, but 35 years of basketball doesn't allow myself the courtesy of joining the 2.2 bazillion people that run marathons or other running events so this is what I am doing to alleviate a 75 year old non ligamentous knee in a 42 year old body. It's strange though, that when I go into the locker room after a workout I think of this clip from Seinfeld:

Monday, March 14, 2016

Bring on the Madness

"March is a month without mercy for rabid basketball fans. There is no such thing as a 'gentleman gambler' when the Big Dance rolls around. All sheep will be fleeced, all fools will be punished severely...There are no rules when the deal goes down in the final weeks of March. Even your good friends will turn into monsters."
- Hunter S. Thompson
Say it's not over.

          It's the Christmas/Holiday time of the year, and it is sometimes referred to as the most wonderful time of the year denoted in a title of a holiday song. I call the +NCAA Men's Basketball March Madness  the most wonderful time of the year. 
          For three weeks, it holds my attention, and provides the equivalent of what a person addicted to nicotine goes through during withdrawal when the final second of the championship game ticks off the clock.
          During the tournament, a fan's team might be knocked out, and that might be a good reason not to watch the rest of the dance unfold, but the tournament can provide enough inspirational stories on a yearly basis to provide the non or loyal fan with as much drama as a +TMZ broadcast.
The Texas Western ( +UTEP- The University of Texas at El Paso  ) Miners 1966 by Opie Otterstad
          The champions of the given year may not even be remembered by some, but the stories and events that unfold during the tournament can be recalled by a cavalier observer that has accidentally been caught up in the drama. From +Bo Kimble (+Loyola Marymount University) to Adreian Payne's (+Michigan State University) Princess Lacey, the tournament is a bowl of emotional soup.

"...bowl of emotional soup."

           The positive aspect the tournament can also bring is that the stage can show that these are student athletes and for 95% of the players on any team will not be on TV again to play the game they love. For some players that will not go to the NBA, they show tremendous heart and courage to take on foes that are earmarked for some kind of invitation to play professional sports. That for most is the essence of the tournament, will George Mason really be able to beat UCONN? Will the relatively less touted VCU beat +Duke Basketball? Personally, I come back to watch the next, "I've never seen that before.", moment.

Lacey Holsworth 11/30/2005 to 04/08/2014

Thursday, March 10, 2016

It's Going to Happen

     Many times, sometimes, or seldom it takes people a great deal of internal motivation to get going in the direction they need to go. Negative thoughts, doubts, or just stagnation can become an internal debilitation that can keep each of us from getting something out of ourselves that we are capable. Then there are those stretches that you feel that you are on fire. You are helping others in a positive way, and feeling good about yourself. You feel the things you are doing leads to betterment both emotionally and for your life as a whole. However, it's going to happen. That day that something happens with something or someone that you don't think you deserve. Your faith in others and your own judgement will falter, and the doubt becomes bigger. You question your ability and blame others for your plight as well. You may take a day to say, "I will take a step back", and then a day becomes two, then three, and pretty soon the path you were on starts to fade away with your positivity. It's going to happen, but don't let it.
     I have had enough, for myself; not comparing this to others, but just my own life experience, to say, "when is the falling backwards going to stop." Kind of like the drive through at Starbucks in the morning, it never ends. (Just park the car and go in, it's faster.) When you feel, or hopefully recognize this is happening, put it into perspective, was it me? What is the real effect of what happened? and, How long will it take to resolve?
    Another, "it's going to happen", can work in a way that can handcuff your own path. For example, you feel that when things are going well, you think, what can happen that will derail my good momentum? Self defeating, yes, but those that can overcome this find the path gets better. For a sports blog, for me, it is my path to coaching. The fear that my life will become to difficult for the sacrifices that are needed to do what I am passionate about. Sometimes it may not be practical for kids that may have opportunities overseas to play ball. For that, I have no real solution other than to be honest with yourself and communicate with those who love you to work out what you want to accomplish. Of course, some things aren't feasible and alienation can occur based on your real life responsibilities, but can you sacrifice? that is up to you, but it's going to happen.

Photo Source:,d.cWc&psig=AFQjCNEWI_lXbp__Khz2IVgOefdgNtdIxA&ust=1409083648089970

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Coach's Quotes March 8th, 2016

Coach's Quotes for Tuesday, March 8th, 2016

"A coach must never forget he is a leader and not merely a person with authority." - John Wooden

The first thing that came to mind was to be a leader and not a boss. When a player comes to you with problems or criticism think first how you were fallible. Look for your internal faults then learn with the player. There are more than one perspective but it is important to make the decision when it comes to leading. Choosing the right decision after the reflection separates the successful coaches from the others.
It is easy to look back and choose John Wooden and see where he would be the gold standard of coaches. Measuring yourself and altering your style is not advisable. To thyne own self be true. Put your stamp on your teams. You don't need to be brash or obnoxious, just diligent in your pursuit with your players to achieve their full potential. John Wooden alliterated that his teams success wasn't measure by championship by his standards, rather for him it was whether his team reached their full potential.

Learn to Play the Clarett

     Watching the ESPN 30 for 30 episode called "Youngstown Boys" I saw a story that I see almost every day. Kids, like Clarett, grow up in adverse conditions that were not created by themselves or their choices. They are produced by an environment in which they are born. I was raised in the midst of a suburban area of middle to upper middle class families. Doug Gottlieb, of the Doug Gottlieb Show, mentions that kids that grow up in suburbia tend not to understand or have a fire to work hard at life including athletics or if they work hard have an easier route to success. If kids like Clarett are given any way out of their situation or perceived path, whether legal or illegal, will fight hard for success in that direction.

     If you have been watching the news you may have come across the new psychological term affluenza; that gives kids that are of families with means, an excuse for breaking the law. You may have formulated your own opinion. If you have poor families at one extreme, and affluent families on the other then the "excuse" should be applied to both extremes. The same lenience we give the affluent need to be given to the less than affluent in my opinion or the distance between the two will increase.

     I do not know every single detail of what transpired with Clarett and Ohio State University. Even if I watched the documentary I can not get full accounts to make more than a superficial assessment. What I gathered from the film is that the smaller entity was overpowered by a larger entity that had nothing to lose but their reputation. My feeling on educational leadership and educators is that they should always act in a manner that benefits the student or at least does the least amount of harm. If anything an institution that involves shaping young minds should try to act as advocates to the fullest extent possible if there is not significant irreparable damage imposed on the university in serving as that advocate. I saw no lasting damage that would have been done to OSU because of Clarett's situation. What did Ohio State gain by putting the restraints on his student athlete status? Really, the events unfolded the way they unfolded by the natural course of two different cultures not being able come to an understanding that would benefit the person who had the least resources to lose, but unfortunately everything to gain.

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Act an Age

"I was a young lad when I was growing up."
- David O'Leary 
(ex-Irish Soccer Manager)
Will you guys let me retire yet?
          Have you heard phrases like; age isn't anything but a number, or; age is all in your head? I believe the statements are accurate, but being old isn't like it used to be when I was young.
          When I have a vigorous workout, not only does it take longer to recover, but it takes longer to get sore from the workout. I don't know which workout I am sore from the next day.    
           Speaking of professional athletes, it is obvious that some fans don't appreciate a whole body of work when a professional athlete, or even an athlete that never made it from out of the amatuer ranks, becomes ancient in the sports world. In any professional sport, if you last more than three years as a large contributor of a team, you usually can be considered as above average. The players that last 5 years or more have really accomplished more than what is the norm. Kids don't understand the normal longevity of a pro athelete, and the elite players are only the 1 percenters. Kids dream about being an athlete mostly because they see dollar signs more than personal achievement.

"Being old isn't like it used to be when I was young."

If you could, wouldn't you?
 The fact that the salaries for players, though they are what the market will bear, lures kids to focus on priorities that lead them away from what will benefit them throughout life. It is positive if the pursuit of sports greatness leads to an accomplishment of an education they would normally not be able to achieve. Living off of an +NFL+NBA, +NHL, +PGA TOUR, or +MLB salary can be lucrative but still probably will not last a lifetime, however; a skill, or developing an ability to be a lifelong learner can carry a person through a prosperous life. An average person's education ends after school, but learning does not, and the ability to figure things out on one's own is the most valuable thing one can get out of an education. If that is missed, you will be following people looking for a fish instead of catching fish on your own.

          "I do nothing but go about persuading you all, old and young alike, not to take thought for your persons or your properties, but and chiefly to care about the greatest improvement of the soul. I tell you that virtue is not given by money, but that from virtue comes money and every other good of man, public as well as private. This is my teaching, and if this is the doctrine which corrupts the youth, I am a mischievous person." - Socrates, quoted by Plato, "The Death of Socrates"

Thursday, March 3, 2016

This Day in Sports History March 3rd

1990 - Hakeem (Then Akeem) has a box score line of 29 points, 18 rebounds, 11 blocks, 10 assists, and 5 steals. That is called a quadruple double. This quadruple double has only been duplicate 2 other times in NBA History.
Thank you CardboardConnection

Thank you PhotoBucket

1875 - Today in 1875 marked the first indoor hockey game in Montreal, Canada at the Victoria Skating Rink. Were they quoted as saying, "I went to a fight, and a hockey game broke out."

Thank you Wikepedia

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Beach Soccer Video?!? Okay

Take a look at this, and see if this looks more fun to play than to watch. Check out the highlight video. #fifa

Coach's Quotes March 2nd

Thank you Doc!

Thank you Bleacher Report

"I'm looking for activity. I put players in and take them out based on effort and defense, not making or missing shots." - Doc Rivers

I am not going to say, "I couldn't have said it better myself.", because I have said it before. However, even when you say that as a coach it does not resonate all of the time. The margins are based on the effort in most industries and in sports a lack of effort productivity causes a deflation in returns in many more ways than one. Again thanks Doc. Many coaches would love to have you at their practices to tell the players just that.