One of my favourite things I am doing now is the Volleyball Coaching Wizards project, in which my partner John Forman and I interview great volleyball coaches with the view to share their insights with other coaches. So far the project has been enormously fun and rewarding. One of the highlights was a recently recorded (and soon to be released) interview with Swedish coaching legend, Anders Kristiansson. At some point in the interview I suggested that he should write a book. He laughed and quoted his friend Julio Velasco, who apparently said…
“If a coach has written a book he is not a good coach. A good coach is thinking only about his next practice.”
I of course laughed at appropriate moment, noted the irony out loud, and silently put my own book plans on hold. I have written before the coach’s books should be taken with a pinch of salt anyway, but this got me thinking a little bit more.
As so often happens in these cases, shortly after the conversation I came across documentaries about two of the great current American coaches. As it happens those two coaches, Gregg Popovich and Bill Belichick, are virtually unanimously considered to be the best coach in the NBA and NFL respectively. Neither has written a book. Neither has an identifiable slogan or method that they have trademarked and marketed. For that reason, I think both documentaries are especially valuable, not least because they contain first person interviews. I embed them here without further comment.
Gregg Popovich and the San Antonio Spurs
Note: The title says 1/6, but it automatically plays all six.
Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots
Note: The embedded video may not play, but the original on YouTube will.