Chapter 2: "Respect, Hate and Fear"

  • "Do you guys respect me?

    (group says… “yes, coach”)

    Why? Why do you respect me? What have I done to earn your respect? I know you all know my coaching track record. My record speaks for itself, and you can respect my record, or not. But I have done NOTHING to earn your respect. Nothing. So stop passing out respect for me or your teammates until it is earned. That’s right. No respect until it is earned.

    We should all be respectful on a human level. What I am talking about is basketball respect. And if you want to get in trouble with me, go out and show general disrespect to others. You are representing Kansas, whether you are wearing a jersey or not. And if I find out any of you clowns are out disrespecting others, I will come down on you like you have never experienced from anyone before. Is that clear?

    (group says… “yes, coach”)

    Confusing, huh? Respect others but don’t respect your teammates or coaches? Yes. That may seem confusing. But in everyday life, most people you are around you are not trying to accomplish getting from A to B at this level. You and I… we have a goal. We have to learn how to execute together. We can’t afford to send false signals to each other. When we are dissatisfied with each other’s performance, we need to communicate that. Sometimes, it gets very hard to communicate when you are bound with the formalities of respect. And respect doesn’t mean anything anymore because it doesn’t have to be earned. You will value respect by the time you leave this program. That, I guarantee.

    So get this clear right now. I don’t have the least bit of respect for any of you as basketball players. You haven’t proven crap to me. Chances are, most of you are delusional and think you have NBA careers and think you will be some kind of superstar some day. Fat chance of that happening for any of you. I’ve seen far better players than every one of you. But I don’t want you to waller in mediocrity. It will be up to you if you can ever earn my respect. And it will be up to you to make your dreams happen. And I won’t give you respect just because you can dribble a ball well. You will earn my respect when you put out relentless effort every second you are at Kansas. That goes far beyond game minutes or practice minutes. You better hustle on every aspect of your life to be the best basketball player you can be. Not only does that mean working on your game outside of our practices, that also means hitting the books and keeping up the high academic standards we set at Kansas. And that also means keeping your noses clean in other affairs. I have zero tolerance for those kinds of screw ups. If you want to mess around and get in trouble, just leave now and save us all the aggravation because when I find out you have messed up, I will breath fire down your neck and you will have fireworks shooting out of your arse! Got that?!

    (group says… “yes, coach”)

    I haven’t earned your respect for being your coach. We haven’t got that far. What I want you to feel now for me is fear and hate. Yes… you will fear and hate me very very soon! As I rip at every part of who you think you are, you will become afraid and you will want me to stop. It is going to get very very uncomfortable. If you don’t feel like you are up for this situation, say so now.

    If I can’t make you fear me and hate me right now, I’m not doing my job. My job is to help develop you into the greatest human beings on earth! My format for doing so is through the game of basketball. But in all reality, we are taking on the challenges of the game of life together. In order to get there, we have to dig in to your inner workings. Find out what makes you tick. No doubt, many things inside of you are good, in fact, many things are great! None of you made it this far in your basketball playing with nothing right inside. But everyone has issues. Hills to climb. Sometimes mountains. Maybe it is your attitude. Maybe your overall perspective. Maybe your basketball IQ isn’t high enough… or your athleticism. Maybe you don’t have the drive and the will to win. We are going to find out what you are made of now, before you make arses of yourselves in front of a national audience and you embarrass the university written on your chests. This is going to be the biggest challenge or your lives. Your actions will decide if you find success or failure. It is up to you.

    Now, you twerps get out of my face. I’m tired of looking at your sorry arses. Go run stairs for two hours. If you slow down, one of my assistant coaches will grind you up into chopped liver. I want to know what you are made of. So go push until you drop. You are going to run until you drop. And if you drop quick, good luck ever earning my respect for you as a player. Get out of here, sissies… "

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