Thursday, March 24, 2016

NCAA SWEET 16 bracket/NBA//NCAA/AAU opinions-Coach Scott Fields

NCAA Sweet 16 bracket/NBA/NCAA/AAU opinions.
Coach Scott Fields
How are your brackets? What teams do you have left?
Who do you have moving forward?

I am not tooting my own horn, but TOOT TOOT,my bracket is still very solid. I still have multiple teams left in my 16.
I will admit, I allowed my heart to make a few choices for me, and as I watched the games, I could see immediately the game was going in the loss colum.

I still have 11 of 16 teams on my original bracket. I still could have 3 of my original Final Four Teams in play. March is still the best month of the year for NCAA Basketball. the conference tournaments, the NIT, The First round and play in games are exciting for the Coaches, Players and Institutions. These programs gain national exposure and for some the only exposure of the year.

It is fun to watch the mid major programs take it to the solid major conference teams. Again, I am NOT surprised by these wins. You have Teams with Jr's and Sr's in the program and that experience and chemistry is invaluable to a successful program. the Traditional Major programs roll the dice every season with the 1 and Done 5 star athletes. Notice I didn't say Student/Athletes.

I do hope at some point the NBA/NCAA collaborate and make the new rules to better the Brand of basketball. Both leagues are suffering currently. NCAA Teams suffer as Players know in advance they will attend their university for 1 season and take their talents to the NBA. Case and point B Simmons of LSU. It is sad how this situation all played out in front of everyone's eyes. Ben had no motivation to attend classes, the Program suffers, the Team suffers embarrassment. The Program and institution gains a black eye nationally. Do I blame Ben? NOPE.. The system is fractured.

I get both sides of the argument, if a man who is 18 can be fighting for his country in War, the same 18 year old should have the choice to play professional basketball to provide for his family. I get it.

But the game is suffering from a product stand point. I am going to say it, the current NBA game is saturated with talent that is not ready neither mentally or physically. The NCAA suffers as players can't build the proper chemistry and they can develop their skills as an 18 yr old. The AAU system plays games and not enough emphasis is put on skill development and player development, to much time is spent I  travel and just playing games.

Many players are not surrounded by the appropriate support systems. Players are being exploited by shoe companies and shoe contracts, AAU coaches are pressured to sign and chase the top talent to gain endorsement deals.

Not enough time is spent on teaching Character , not enough time is spent on teaching Core Values and principles of Integrity. Not enough times is given to the Process, everyone wants to skip the Process. When the Process is what is needed to build the foundation of Character. Time is needed to Teach Life Skills from Life Lessons.

I heard Dick Vitale give a suggestion in a live interview on the Dan Patrick show last week.
Dickie V said. " If a kid wants to go pro at the age of 18, out of HS, let him go and bypass college all together, but if he chooses to go to college, make him stay until he at least gets his AA. That is at least two years." That is at least a step in the right direction.
I hope I didnt misquote or misrepresent his quote, but that was the backbone of it.

When we teach kids the value of a commitment, make them stick to that commitment, or do we just allow them to commit until something better comes along? Is this a small window of reality and why so many marriages end in divorce? Is this why there is NO LOYALTY to Teams, Franchises? to relationships?

I will continue to believe that a 16 seed will soon knock off a 1 seed. 15 are already beating 2 seeds. 14 seeds are already beating 3 seeds. Look how many 12 seeds beat 5 seeds this year. SFA  beat WV. Arkansas Little Rock took it to Purdue. Yale beat Baylor. Hawaii beat California.

We all enjoy cheering for an underdog, come on, we all lived vicariously through North Iowa over Texas.
It is upset city in the first couple rounds, this is when reality TV is at its best, Real is great for March Madness as we know it. Then we get deeper in the brackets, then producers and NCAA pray the top seeds advance. More Fans and supporters, more ticket sales, this is why top Teams advance, the stronger and more talented teams find success.

To change the subject, back to NBA....Golden State Warriors and Steph Curry chasing a record number of wins in a single season, makes great TV. It gives meaning to the regular season.
But look at the SA Spurs who are also right there as a top team in the West. Coach Pop has his vetran team right where he wants them. Rested and under the radar of the Americas attention and focus.
TV ratings are up to see Steph Curry do things that haven't been done for years in the league.

Top 4 teams in the West are solid, after the top 4 in the West, the level of play drops off.
In the East, How many contenders do we really have?
Do we really believe a team in the East can content in a 7 game series ?

Coaches are being fired and on the hot seat, players are firing coaches? owners hands are forced to keep the top players in a franchaise happy, again, CORE VALUES, INTEGRITY. Our microwave society , not allow the time or Process to take effect.

NCAA coaches are fired for not winning NOW.

Yes, I am a Coach, I am a fan of the game. I still feel our game is the best spectator sport in the sport entertainment industry. But, I am. Realistic, we need to fix the issues and find solutions to the problems that face our game.

Grass Roots basketball also needs fixed, not enough time is spent on fundamentals.
We have far to many coaches having players dribble around comes, I have yet to see a cone on the court during a game. It am just saying.......
Analytics, ok, I understand it has its place, but basketball is not money ball, it is action/reaction contest. we can all look at stats and take from them what fits our needs.
The same can be said for two different people reading a Bible verse, two different people can interpret the verse two separate ways.

I am a Coach. I am a Teacher of the Game. There is a reason why our Teams had success.
I value relationships, I care for the players I coach. It is about them, it is not about me.
I hold players accountable, there is transparency, I believe in effective communication. I believe in staying positive. I believe giving a horse some sugar will produce  positive results than constantly cracking the whip on the backside of that same horse.
I believe in roles, I believe in a philosophy and a system. I believe in putting my players and coaches in a situation to be successful.
I identify strengths, and allow people to do their strengths. I discuss weaknesses and work in those weaknesses until they become an asset or strength for the individual.

I am a Detail guy, I focus on the small details. I believe in teaching in progression.

I hope this provides insight, I hope it is empowering for those who took the time to read it.

Good Luck on your journey !

Monday, March 14, 2016

NCAA Brackets /Conference Tournament and takeaways- Coach Scott Fields

2016 NCAA Men's Bracket/Conference action take Aways-Coach Scott Fields

Once again March has lived up to the Madness. There is no better time of year for the college basketball fan. I have coached in the NCAA, NJCAA and I have also been blessed to coach at the professional level.I have been honored to dabble into the NBA. I have to admit, the NCAA March Madness college atmosphere is hard to beat. The all or nothing, survive and advance, win or go home. This is the best reality TV there is, the drama....The best team doesn't always win in the NCAA, but with pressure, and a one game opportunity, a less dominant team can find away to gain some Confidence or they can have a well executed game plan to sneak Goliath. The NBA, well, the better team typical wins in the playoffs, as a 7 game series, the game to game adjustments. talent will usually prevail. Not always, but for the most part yes....NBA Playoffs are fun and exciting, far more exciting for the basketball fan than the 82 game regular season. 
March, we have HS basketball around the country who sets the tone, these young men and women (16-18 year olds playing their hearts out) with aspirations to play at the next level. 
March we have NJCAA, NAIA, NCAA tournament action, We have conference tournaments.
These Conference tournaments allow opportunities to obtain automatic bids into the Big Dance.
NCAA D 1, D 2 or D 3, it doesn't matter. We have bubble team getting the snub, but then we have the N.I.T. The National Invitational Tournament. This is an opportunity for Teams to continue to play and grow as teams and programs across the country. Look how many NIT Teams get into the NCAA the following season. This is another platform for exposure for Players, Coaches an opportunity for recruits to see programs and their style of play.

The NCAA, well there are some things to consider to continue to help the brand and level of play. It is hard to build a program when players are leaving after 1 season. 
I hear debate about the 1 and done. I have strong opinions on it as well. The NBA is already saturated with young players who are not prepared mentally and physically for a minimum of 82 game season. It is a grind, and it is a grown man game in the best league in the world. You can realistically have an 18 year old competing against 35 year old men, whom are much more physically strong and experienced to know and understand the nuances of the game. It is an immediate mismatch. 
This is also why we now see mid major programs not only competing, but beating top tradition programs across the country, Why ? Well, you could have 22 or 23 year old athletes playing against an 18 year old. the mid major programs could have players who have played 3 or 4 years together, they have the chemistry, the have the experience, the have the mental and physical stability to gain an advantage over the diaper dandies.
The NBA an 8 seed can beat a 1 seed,  and I predict it will not be long when we see a NCAA 16 seed beat a 1 seed. Teams can overlook, or take lightly a 16 seed. The 16 seed can be hungry to prove itself, they can gain the confidence needed to be the Giant Killer, we already have had 15 seeds beat a 2 seed. they are bracket killers I understand, but it is great for the game and great for the tournament. The next Cinderella story. 
I grew up and played my HS basketball in Indiana before thee was classification. The movie Hoosiers was made about this experience, the NCAA has the platform for the same hysteria and mystique. Look at the 1983 NC State Wolfpack lead by Coach Jim Valvano, whom the younger generation only know for the Jimmy V foundation speech at the ESPY's. My friend Big T, Thurl Bailey played on that team. 
I will put the 2016 NCAA bracket on here for you to make your picks, test your knowledge.
Come on, let's have some fun with it....The POTUS test his brackets every year on ESPN. Buffet offers a Billion dollars for the perfect bracket. Gotta Love it ! Try to predict the unpredictable.
Put your faith in young student/athletes with the pressure and parity.

Let's be honest, in the NCAA Coaching matters, they can play an impact of the NCAA. It is not a surprise that the same top coaches find away to get to the elite 8 and final 4.
the further you advance the more that weaknesses can be exposed. Top coaches and staffs will attack those weaknesses. 
I am not saying Coaching doesn't matter in the NBA. But there are great basketball minds in the NBA. Yes, you can see experience pay dividends with strong coaching staffs deep in the NBA Playoffs.

Energy, Enthusiasm, Focus, Execution, with Passion and Emotion. This is what the NCAA is all about.Can a Coach balance the one and done athlete and surround them with great role players. Recruiting is what it is all about, get the players to buy into your system and philosophy. But the players in a position to be successful. To be Successful, it is still all about those special relationships. 

Let's set back and enjoy this special time of year !
I hope your Team does well.

FaceBook/ Scott Fields
Twitter @ Scott_Fields

Thursday, March 3, 2016

When your Passion becomes your Purpose - Coach Scott Fields

When your Passion becomes your Purpose- Coach Scott Fields

This is not to self promote, This is not to spread poor content in a saturated social media market. This is just a short post or blog to say Thanks to Coach Vando, Thanks for allowing me to be me the past few months. because of your kindness and generosity , I was allowed to be apart of something special and unique. We changed the culture and brought a Program and Team back to life. I hope and pray I have been an impact on the lives of those we were blessed to work with?
I am sad and a bit frustrated when I am not on the court or on the sidelines, not in a huddle or not able to share knowledge and teach life lessons through the game of basketball.
This is a wonderful profession. I take my role as a Coach very serious. This is a Passion of mine with no doubt. If you have ever watched my coaching style, you will observe the Enthusiasm. It is unquestionable. 
First, I care deeply for the individuals I am honored to work with. It is a privledge. I don't take that for granted. It is about building relationships with the athletes based on Honesty, Trust and a commitment to assisting them in developing them into accountable people and productive members of society. I do not have a selfish agenda, It is about them and for them and helping them achieve success. It is NOT just about Winning. The Success is the bi product of the life lessons being taught in the daily repetition. Work Ethic, Perseverance, Transparency and Accountability. If we are able to get the players we coach to hold each other Accountable and to build each other up with positivity. We as Coaches simple Guide and Manage the ego's, We get them to become selfless members of a unit that are for each other and the greater good of the Team. 

We are able to win 3 of the last 4 regular season games. We took momentum into a tough conference tournament. Region 18 is a great league. Congrats to NIC for an undefeated regular season and a # 3 National Ranking. Congrats to SLCC on winning the Conference Tournament.  

I was thrilled to be apart of this rebuilding process. I saw progress, I saw growth and maturity. I saw the confidence grow and self esteem rise. 
I am humbled to think that the young men we coached are now better prepared for their next step in their journeys! 
I close my eyes and send up prayers, that I will be able to continue my Passion? it doesn't matter what level? It doesn't matter the State, Country, or region of the World ? 
I am truly blessed, I have been at the highest levels of the Game. I have been in the best leagues around the globe. There is something special about the college game. There was something special about being close to home and family. I feel we were able to mold and teach and prepare these young men for the next level. I am gratified in being apart of that process.
Thanks to ALL of you for your continued support and kind words that were shared along the way.
It means a lot.....

This Passion was born in the state of Indiana. The Hoosier heartland of the country. Basketball is like religion in this state. The Purpose has manifested itself around the Globe. I am eager to see where this Purpose takes me next. 

Passion to Purpose..... I hope you all find your Purpose in this life. 
Stay Positive, believe in yourself and know your worth and value. Serve others on your journey.
Be grateful and know your Purpose has meaning !

Good Luck on your journey !