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Upper Hand

Sports Management Blog


on Jul 29, 2012 1:24:02 PM | By Upper Hand | 0 Comments
There’s a classic scene in the movie “Wayne’s World’ where Garth and Wayne bow down in front of their rock idols and say “We are not worthy!” A similar scene arose when we had the opportunity to spend some time with legendary College Basketball Coach Bobby Cremins…he’s got a basketball court named in his honor for goodness sakes, “ Cremins Court!” His list of accolades as a coach and educator is absolutely incredible…he compiled a 60% winning percentage over his career, winning 570 games in 4 stops – Point Park College, Appalachian State, Georgia Tech and College of Charleston. He won the ACC Tournament 3 times and took his 1990 Georgia Tech Team to the Final Four. He was named “Coach of the Year” in the ACC 3 times, and he won the same honor in the Southern Conference another 4 times. Also, in 1990 he was named the “ Naismith College Coach of the Year,” the highest honor for a basketball coach in college athletics. Coach Cremins also helped numerous players reach the ultimate level of playing in the NBA. A few notable names are Mark Price, John Salley, Dennis Scott, Brian Oliver, Kenny Anderson, Jon Barry, Travis Best, Stephon Marbury, Jason Collier and Matt Harpring. Cremins also was an Asst. Coach on Team USA’s appearance in the Summer Olympic Games of 1996 in Atlanta. He had the opportunity to coach NBA Legends Charles Barkley, Shaquille O’Neal, Karl Malone and others on the “ Dream Team 2,” where he won a Gold Medal!   Coach Cremins is an inspiration and a true legend in the world of basketball coaching. Coach Cremins retired during the ’11-’12 season while at College of Charleston and needless to say, college basketball will miss him. We are honored and excited to bring you an exclusive chat with Coach Cremins. Enjoy! TL: Having been a Division 1 Head coach for 32 years, how has coaching changed since you began your career? Coach Cremins: These days young men want instant gratification they are very impatient. And sometimes don’t understand the process. The early NBA rule has changed things a lot. But the basics remain the same. TL: With the Olympics coming up and the US looking to repeat as champions, what was it like being a coach for the 1996 Dream Team? Coach Cremins: We were such a favorite. We knew we were going to win. We did get a couple of scares. the foreign teams have improved with their NBA players and are no longer intimidated by our NBA players. Practices were great except when I tried to officiate. My favorite moment was watching the dream team handle the young girl whose mother was killed in the bombing. I really enjoyed working with Lenny Wilkins and Jerry Sloan. TL: You have worked with some of the best basketball players of all time. What separates the great players from the average? Coach Cremins: Definitely confidence. The great ones spend a lot time in the gym and work on their weakness. They are highly motivated to play at the highest level.   TL: What message would you give to youth athletes today who want to get to the next level? Coach Cremins: Be patient, confident, and work your tail off.   #TeamTRAINlete "Follow" us on Twitter - www.twitter.com/trainlete "Like" us on Facebook - www.facebook.com/trainlete  
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USA Men’s Basketball Olympic Team – Dream Team? No. Actual Team? It feels like it!

on Jul 10, 2012 12:05:02 PM | By Upper Hand | 0 Comments
                Who is excited about the 2012 Olympic Games in London? We are just a few weeks away from the Opening Ceremony and I could not be more excited! There are so many story lines... - will Phelps become the most decorated Olympian of all-time? -Phelps vs. Lochte -the Men’s 100M Sprint – Bolt vs. Gay -the U.S Women’s Soccer Team But one story line that comes up every year for me is the Men’s USA Basketball Team. With the announcement of the final squad behind us, it is now time to look towards the prospects of the USA Team securing another Gold Medal! I love how Hall-of-Fame Coach Mike Krzyzewski (“Coach K”) has constructed this team. In the ’92, ’96, ’00 Olympic Games the USA Squad was pretty easy to build…pick the top 5 guards, top 5 forwards and top 2 centers in the NBA, head to the Olympics, roll through the field by an average of 30+ points per game and win a gold medal. That was a pretty easy approach! Then came The American Team’s 6 th place finish at the 2002 FIBA World Championship and the embarrassing bronze medal performance at the 2004 Summer Olympic Games…in my opinion this sad time was the result of American stars losing focus on the importance of representing their country and the rest of the world “catching up” as basketball becomes more of an international game. In 2008 Coach K took the reins and began to “re-build” the U.S into the power the world is accustom to. The international game is much different than the game of the NBA…the international game is focused on finesse, fundamentals, half court offensive sets, constant movement and shooting. Take a look at the USA Basketball Team’s roster, notice anything? Fast. Guard heavy. Long. Fast. Athletic. Fast. Versatile. We have one “true” center in Tyson Chandler…but Chandler isn’t the traditional big man that we’ve grown accustom to watching in the NBA. He is a 7”1, long, athletic “big” who can get up and down the court like a guard, rebound and block any shot that goes up near the hoop! Kevin Love and Blake Griffin are really the only other true “Forwards” on the squad and everyone else can play either guard or forward depending on flow of the game. Versatile! Coach K has constructed a TEAM. This is no longer the best group of NBA Players thrown together to put on a Harlem Globetrotters type show…The USA Basketball Team is now a collection of hand-picked players that will become a team. A team to represent the United States of America. I hate that we had to go through those “dark years” from 2004-2007, but in hindsight it was for the best. Maybe we had to go through that to understand where we needed to go to get back to our spot as the world’s #1 team! The 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London will not be an easy tournament for Team USA Basketball…but I could not be more confident in our coaching staff and our players and I am excited to watch them in their quest towards representing the USA and taking home gold! "Follow" us on Twitter - www.twitter.com/trainlete "Like" us on Facebook - www.facebook.com/trainlete
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