Athletes Return to Campus Training 4

These are just some random thoughts as we seem to be moving closer to returning our athletes to campus.  All kinds of tentative plans are being put together and things are on paper.  To me, this is good.

As I review things in my head and organize my thoughts there are A LOT of things that we're going to have to do on top of our normal day-to-day operations.

The biggest thing that I've talked about with our AT, AD and Facilities Management guy is our lack of ability to give any leeway on anything to anybody.  This is going to be tough on our athletes because they just don't understand that what they want and what they think really doesn't matter at all.  And I can't stress enough, what they want and what they think doesn't matter at all, given the situation.

They are used to coming and going as they please (for the most part).  I am pretty lenient with things, within reason.  I understand that things do come up and I try not to bust balls unless they are constantly having "something" they have to do.  You know the ones I'm talking about.

Normally, if I get a call or text saying, "Coach, I have (insert whatever life-altering event it is).  Can I come to a later/earlier lifting group?"  100% of the time I say "yes".  In my mind, as long as they get it done, that's all that really matters.  If their coach is good with this (I always ask so I know where they stand when this situation comes up) so am I.

With the current situation, that doesn't seem like it's going to disappear, I no longer have the ability to have any leniency with this stuff.  You can't make it at (insert time)?  Well, you're not lifting today.

With the rules we are putting in place I simply can't bend.  This is where this year is going to be EXTREMELY challenging for strength coaches.  We all deal with the sport coach who can't stay on schedule or who thinks the entire world revolves around them and their team.  It's going to be an ongoing conversation.  Hopefully, our respective administrators have the balls to stand up to these coaches and support us.

If you all are anything like me, telling a coach "no" is not something you want to do.  You want to accommodate as much as possible.  Even if that accommodation is beyond what is within reason.

Obviously, there are other issues we'll face, but this is one that has been in my conversations this week.  For me, patience is going to be at a premium.  I can't stand repeating myself.  Oddly, when I write, I repeat myself all the time.  Yes, I notice it and it does bother me.

We are going to have some tough conversations with athletes and coaches this year.  I'm planning on going about it this way:

  1.  Private conversation about supporting me with AD, Deputy AD (my direct supervisor).
  2.  Address all coaches in staff meeting.
  3.  Address all teams on 1st day in the weight room (even if they are not "my" teams" I will take that off of my assistants).
  4.  Unfortunately, I'll have to go to our first athlete meeting (where all athletes are together) and address this with them, again.
  5.  Every time this is a problem, document and make that head coach, the AD and Deputy AD aware of the situation.

I'm sure there are some other things I'll come up with or that I'll be recommended to do by my boss.

My goal is to have my plan in place so I can present it and then make adjustments as directed by the powers that be.  I figure, better to have a plan than to react and look like I'm not prepared.

Oh, and I get to do strength coach stuff on top of all of this.  Looks like this will be a year of heavy self-medication.  I really am looking forward to it, though.

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