Parents, are you unsure of how to navigate what feels like a crazy, intense world of youth basketball?
Not sure what to do? What NOT to do?
Coaches, how do you handle parents who are unrealistic about their children’s potential or those who have a child with potential? How do you handle players from the weakest to the strongest in the gym?
Listen to the great insight, expertise and advice of Andy Borman, executive director of the New York Rens AAU Basketball Team located in NYC.
Andy and I have much in common as former college athletes – Andy was a starting soccer player at Duke and basketball walk-on – and as directors of youth sports programs. Andy is also former basketball director at IMG Academy and Westchester House of Sports, and I met downtown earlier this year. We had a great conversation about the business of youth sports through the elite levels of play and development. Andy regularly draws from the lessons his father, a West Point graduate, and coach, gave to him, and he often cites how intense he was as a kid who took losses so hard that he walked home from games.
Andy’s perspective is unique given his career as a fully committed two-sport high school athlete, and a one-year player at IMG Academy. Andy earned a soccer scholarship and became a starter on Duke’s Elite 8 soccer team. Andy, who describes himself as “way too crazy” as a young athlete, also was a walk-on on the Duke basketball team that won the national title in 2001.
After his career at Duke, Andy coached at the college level and trained college and pro players. Soon thereafter he realized that being an assistant coach was not for him. He moved to Chicago to attend grad school. There he started “The Athlete Within,” and his business boomed. Andy then accepted the position as director of basketball at IMG Academy in Florida. Recently Andy has made the jump from the paying model to the non-paying model as director of the Rens, where the most elite and talented kids across New York City play for free.
We split the interview into two episodes. This is Part I subtitled, “Coaches’ Decision” where we are speaking to and providing tips for mostly parents and coaches. In the second part, “How to Add Value & Go to Your Limit” (to be released two weeks after Part I), we’ll be speaking more to players, parents and coaches who are looking for early indicators of talent, and how to build and maintain a competitive advantage.
Click here to listen to this episode of The Mo’ Motion Podcast on itunes.
Or you can listen on Sound Cloud here. (See all notes, minutes, photo albums and transcript links below.)
Areas we cover in Part I: Coaches’ Choice include:
- How playing sports helped Andy find friends and a build a social network as his family moved throughout his childhood
- The impact of his father, a West Point grad and coach, who told him early, “If you want to ensure that playing time is there for you no matter what, you have to be the best player on the team and it has to be obvious.”
- The hope for multi-sport athletes and the extinction of the seasonal athlete
- How Borman family rules included not running away from problems or the blaming the coach or hopping team to team mid-season
- Andy also discusses shifts in the AAU system, transfers, re-classifying, and big fish little pond or little fish, big pond and the ideal player as a “mute orphan”
- He also mentions the best coaches he had from youth to college basketball, and how many great coaches and players there are at the DI-DIII levels
- Lastly, Andy gives dos and don’ts that hopefully will help parents navigate to their best of their ability in the often crazy world of youth sports
Part I of II – Andy Borman: Coaches’ Choice – Time codes
2:00 Impact father had on his development and approach
7:00 How to straddle more than one sport
9:00 Life as a walk-on basketball player vs. starter on Duke soccer team
11:00 Best moment as a basketball player
12:00 Transition from the basketball utopia at Duke to coaching world
14:00 Starting a successful youth through high school hoops program in Chicago
18:00 On building a culture for youth vs. the culture of college basketball
20:00 Pressure on college coaches to be on 24/7 and how AAU model has changed
23:00 Players must “eat their vegetables” with games as the dessert
24:00 The risks of big fish, little pond and need for little fish, big pond
25:00 Yet the importance of kids ages 14 and under to get playing time
26:00 Parents inability to assess their child’s potential
27:00 The Division III Athlete – how players develop different times, places
29:00 Andy’s take on re-class, prep school
35:00 Transfer rate in college hoops
36:00 Gunning for a scholarship vs. playing club sports in college
36:30 Benefits of starting on one team, sitting bench on other stronger team
38:00 Andy, a parent of an infant, on “the ideal parent”
39:00 Rules NOT to break as a parent and when to approach coach
48:00 Most common mistakes parents make
49:00 Most important things parents can do and say
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