View from the Bench

Posted By: Dillon Burns
Posted On: September 25th, 2016
Attending: Limerick Institute of Technology

This past weekend I was fortunate to travel down to Cork, this time for coaching purposes. The Limerick Celtics 18 and under team was competing in a pre-season tournament at parochial hall versing some very good competition. Although the Celtics went 0 and 2 for the day it was a great learning tool for the young lads. They got to experience what high level basketball in Ireland was and are now able to see how hard they must work. For myself, it was great as a measure of standard to see the aspects each must improve in, and what the team needs to do as a whole to achieve success.

To be on the sideline coaching with Tony was unique. For so many years I was on the other end of that court, and now to be the one distributing the instruction felt funny. At times, I truly wanted to sub myself in and play with the guys, in order to get some of my points across, and also because of my competitive nature.

The hardest part was understanding that a lot of the players on the team are still learning the game and do not have the basketball IQ that players at that age in America do. However, the exciting part is that is now my job to help them achieve this and not only be able to become better players but smarter players. Teaching them the terminology and concepts of the game, will make it easier to give instructions on the court while coaching and make playing become a lot easier. Creating intelligent basketball players will give them the ability to have the confidence to make plays and on the fly decisions.

Overall, coaching is a lot different than playing. While on the sideline you analyze every aspect of the game and see things from afar. What I have begun to learn is that as a coach you cannot overreact to every mistake. No basketball game is perfect and there will be mistakes made, it is human nature. However, you can learn from these mistakes during a stopping of play, such as timeouts and explain to the team or specific player how to prevent it from happening again.  Instill total confidence in players and be very encouraging also are important. Providing energy and enthusiasm is a key concept that helps build a team up, letting them feel comfortable rather than playing timid.


It will be a journey, but it will be a fun one!

Keep tuning in to see the progress being made out in Limerick!

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