College football is in the midst of spring practice. This is a period of time that can make or break a team’s season in the fall. Lars Anderson wrote a great piece in the March 28th edition of Sports Illustrated on how great leaders leverage this time with their teams.
We can learn a lot about leadership and team building from these insights.
- “You need to have a comfort and enjoyment of violence to succeed in this game, and this is developed in the spring.” – LSU head coach Les Miles
- “It (spring practice) gives us a time to teach, to try new things and discover new players.” – Miles
- “There are only two sports in Texas: football and spring football.” – Jones Ramsey
- “Coach (Bear) Bryant wanted to see who was tough in the spring, who he could count on in the fall.” – Gene Stallings
- “If a player was going to quit, Bryant wanted him to quit in (spring) practice, not in a game.” – Bobby Bowden
- “That day(watching Bryant coach spring practice) was the single most important one in my 56 years of coaching. I took everything I saw from Bryant and applied it to what I was going to do as a head coach.” – Bowden
- “You don’t want to get anyone hurt, and I mean, come on, it’s just practice.” – Steve Spurrier
- “You can coach the spread all year round. That rule of limiting contact in spring practice absolutely led to a shift in what offenses you see in college football today.” – Bowden
- “Spring football was huge for Cam (Newton). That’s when he won the players and coaches over. He couldn’t have done much better. That’s really where our journey as a team coming together started.” – Gene Chizik
- “Cael (Sanderson) told me to be creative and have fun, and that reminded me why I love wrestling. The wins just followed.” – NCAA champion wrestler Quentin Wright
- “I don’t know what I’d (have done) without competition. It’s helped me become a man…I gained a lot of strength because of my crutches. My mom told me God made me like this was for a reason.” – One-legged NCAA wrestling champion Anthony Robles
- “(Oklahoma Thunder center Kendrick) Perkins doesn’t like other NBA players.” – Doc Rivers
- “I like when our guys play with a chip on their shoulders, and he has it all the time.” – Scott Brooks on Perkins
- “I realized I wanted to live the right way. I wanted to be an instrument of change. That’s what you have to at the end of the day. No matter why you’re in here, own up to your actions. Hold yourself accountable. Have a plan, so when you get outside those gates you’re going to have a chance. This is not the end for you. This is not it! You control your destiny.” – Mike Vick speaking to inmates at Avon Park Correctional Institute.
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