Basketball coaches teach, train and direct players before, during and after
games. They work with all ages and at all levels of play -- from youth leagues
to the professional leagues.
Being a good coach means knowing the game and how to pass on that knowledge.
The most successful coaches have a strong philosophy about basketball that
shapes their coaching style -- some believe in defense, outside shooting or
scoring from under the basket. Coaches enjoy many rewards throughout the whole
process of getting to a winning level.
Ross Tomlinson, who used to coach university men's basketball, says that
the brief moment when his team wins a game does not compare to the high he
gets from hours and hours of practice.
"You tend to remember things along the way and through the course of the
season...and the people that you interact with more than a single event,"
says Tomlinson. "I find single events to be fairly non-defining."
Coaches spend much of their time preparing players. They run practices,
invent and teach plays, scout opponents, and at some levels, even scout for
future players of their own. They meet with other coaches, work with players
on the courts and perform administrative tasks in an office.
Basketball is big business. It can bring a lot of money and attention to
certain colleges and individuals. This means that coaches will often be asked
to visit high schools across the continent to spot the brightest young stars
and promote their schools.