Teachable Moments: Basketball began with Canadian minister Naismith

The very first “Inside Out Coach” was the creator of basketball, who was orphaned at age 9 and later became a minister, Dr. James Naismith wanted a tool to transform young people. He wanted to connect with young people in a powerful way and determined that athletics and later basketball could more effectively influence young people than any of his preaching efforts. Dr. Naismith was far more interested in his players as men and students than as merely just players. He saw sports as a path for personal and spiritual development and said that athletics have a tremendous educational value. (Think John Wooden vs. any Transactional Coach you have encountered!)

Now, think about sports in our country today- does that sound like the way our culture values sports and the coaches that coach and the players that play? ESPN, YouTube, Money, Personal fame and power, and ego have distorted the original intent of why these very sports were even created. Dr. Naismith had a vision- a vision to create a tool to be transformational in the lives of young people. In 1911, he warned our country of the commercialism of sports and the deleterious impact it would have.  Think about that- 1911- 100 years ago.

So, let me tell you why this matters-I know I will fail you and your sons this year, trust me when I say that, and I am asking you in advance for your forgiveness but, hear me say- the original vision of Dr. Naismith is directly aligned with why I coach basketball, my personal mission statement, and the CPA Way. I love your sons and I am far more concerned at what God is doing through the game of basketball in all of our lives than I am at driving to some result. This is far bigger than Xs and Os- I am more concerned with the Ys- to nurture and transform them to be young men that would be others-focused, that would learn to love, and that would be filled with compassion that it would overflow in every relationship they have. I want them to understand that God placed in us core desires like A Battle to Fight and An Adventure to Live and I want to see that come to life as we work together toward a self-dying vision.

I am asking for your prayers as there are so many factors from this culture that are working directly against us. We need to “lock our shields” and “come as one” and be more concerned with WE than ME- that includes all of us as coaches, players, parents, and fans. Further, we are talking about taking risks and dealing with disappointment and moving on to the next play- nobody is perfect! I love each and every one of you and am honored to be your coach and faithfully join you in raising up this group of young men to be “Christ Centered; Others Focused” Young Men!

Be Blessed and enjoy this article from the Tennessean today!

Soli Deo Gloria,

Coach Drew Maddux


On Nov. 6, 1861, James Naismith was born in Almonte, Canada. He saw athletics as a more effective ministry for helping young men than any efforts from a pulpit; along the way, he created the game eventually called basketball, and he fostered sportsmanship in favor of gamesmanship.

My attention was directed to the fact that there were other ways of influencing young people than preaching. In games it was easily seen that the man who took his part in a manly way and yet kept his thoughts and conduct clean had the respect and the confidence of the most careless,” Naismith wrote in a 1928 letter saved by his granddaughter.

Naismith was orphaned when he was 9 and was raised by his uncle Peter on the family farm. His uncle offered to pay for college, provided Naismith would come home and work the farm during breaks. Though his fellow theology students were scandalized by his interest in sports, which they thought were a tool of the devil, Naismith became a star athlete for McGill University, playing lacrosse, football, rugby, gymnastics and wrestling.

He received a degree in physical education from McGill in 1888, and, in 1890, his diploma in theology from Presbyterian College. He then attended the relatively new YMCA International Training School in Springfield, Mass., where he entered the physical education program run by Dr. Luther Gulick Jr.

Naismith was assigned to deal with a class of “incorrigibles,” and Gulick challenged Naismith to find or invent a game to occupy them. Gulick is quoted in Rob Rains’ biography of Naismith: “We need a new game to exercise our students, a competitive game, like football or lacrosse, but it must be a game that can be played indoors… without roughness or damage to players and equipment.”

After weeks of struggle, Naismith thought up a game. He wrote down 13 rules; asked the maintenance manager for a couple of boxes, got peach baskets instead; nailed them up and set the 18 young men to play.

It worked, beyond expectation. Within weeks, upward of 200 folks crammed into the gym to watch the new game. Naismith himself only ever played in two games.

He married a fellow student and decided to go to medical school in Denver.

Soon after graduation, he was offered the position as director of the chapel at the University of Kansas in Lawrence and a teaching position in the physical education department. But he was not hired as basketball coach.

Naismith did take over the basketball team but is the only Kansas basketball coach with a losing record. He often refereed the games his team played, and Naismith was far more interested in his players as men and students than as players.

The rules of basketball and the nature of sports in America changed, much to the dismay of the man who saw sports as a path for personal and spiritual development. In a 1911 speech, Naismith decried the commercialism of sports and the deleterious impact it would have, concluding “athletics have an educational value, and this should be their aim in an educational institution.

In 1936, he attended the Olympic Games in Berlin, where basketball was first played as a medal sport.

He died on Nov. 28, 1939, in Lawrence.


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The CPA Way

First email to our CPA Basketball Family today:

Let me be the first to say Good Morning and that I hope you are off to a great Thursday!!! I wanted to send an email to you this morning to officially welcome you to the CPA Basketball family for the 2012-2013 season and express my gratitude to you that your family will be in the program this year!

I normally blind copy the distribution list on emails but, this morning I wanted each of you to see the first focus point this year that we will be stressing to our young men in the program 6th-12th grade- “IT IS BIGGER THAN ME!”- Look at all the people on this list that will be involved in CPA Basketball this year- it is an amazing blessing and challenge at the same time. Our program is built on four words that were taken from Mark 12 when Jesus was asked what were the greatest commandments and he quickly responded to “Love the Lord your God with all of your heart and Love your neighbor as yourself.” We consolidated it 7 years ago and it was the first sign we hung in the locker room- CHRIST-CENTERED; OTHERS FOCUSED. We all have to teach, live, and reinforce to each other and to our young men that in this selfish world- a world sending messages to all of us that it is all about me- to think outside of yourself and it is about WE not ME.

Here is a video clip from one of my favorite movies (Gladiator) that I would like for you to watch that displays exactly this point and what the culture should look like within CPA Basketball this year and every year. Please take a moment and watch it:


Now, some of you on this list have been with me a long time and been a part of this program for many years and for some of you this is your first experience as we speak. I wanted to lay out for all of you the vision I have for all of us this year and exactly the culture that all of us should be praying for. I can promise you this- if we will uphold these core values this year and keep each other accountable to live in these each day, I can not promise wins and trophies and rings (as the picture attached shows taken after the state championship last year) but, I can promise that all of us, including your young men, will have a better experience and the process of raising up these boys to be men in a selfish world will be far more enjoyable and transcend just the results.


1. This is a Player’s First Program
Their success is the focus. Everything that we do and every prayer we pray should begin and end with the PLAYERS in mind. This is their experience- this is not about us as parents or coaches or fans- it is totally about them and making sure they are successful and have the resources to be successful. This is about transforming them into future young men that will give their lives away and be in the future would learn the lessons today to be unbelievable husbands, fathers, employers, and productive citizens.

2. EVERY Person has to do His/Her Part. Focus is SHARED SACRIFICE with SHARED ACCOUNTABILITY!
God has created each of us to play our part in His larger story- this is a part that only you and your son can play. It begins with building up who God has called them to be and celebrating that- there is only one YOU! It begins with a shared sacrifice of serving each other relentlessly and holding each other and ourselves accountable at a standard of Excellence.

3. When Someone does well, WE all do well! When someone makes a mistake, WE all make the mistake!
My prayer is there would be no finger pointing this year at anyone unless it is to tell someone Great pass or they did a good job. If anyone succeeds, we all succeed and should celebrate that. If anyone makes a mistake, we all make a mistake and must share in that. This is totally about the whole from top to bottom and no one person is bigger than the team or program.

4. Play to your Strengths
God has gifted our young men in some amazing ways-physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually- play to those strengths. Do not compare and compete against others- do what you do well and focus on how that helps the entire group.

5. Play Fast
We must have a sense of urgency and live each day like it is our last. This season will go super fast- just ask our seniors from last year and it will be over in the blink of an eye. Enjoy the day and have a sense of urgency. The way we play the game of basketball-every play is a 2 Minute drill- is how we should live our days- never taking anything for granted.

6. Play Hard
This program is not for everyone- we expect more from our young men than any program in the country. This is not for the uncommitted and we make no promises to anyone. There will be days it will be tough, games where things do not go your way- focus on your effort and attitude and invest and leverage all that you have each day.

7. WIN the Moment!
We must FINISH! Win each moment, each experience, each day! Yes that means behavior and in the class room as well. God calls us to excellence in everything we do- not so we will be glorified but that all Glory and all honor would reflect back to HIM!

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After the 2012 NBA season is over, when everyone is debating who should be MVP or who choked or which coach will be fired first, here’s the real question we should be asking:

Why did so many major players suffer major injuries?

You know the easy answer. Blame the lockout, the shortened season, too many games with too little rest. When the lockout ended, and the league rushed into action with limited workouts and practice, the consequences were immediately obvious: many players were out of shape, poorly conditioned, and on their way to being injured, some for days or weeks, others for the entire season.

But here’s my next question, and to me this is the real issue: Why weren’t the players already prepared to play?

If you’re one of the 450 professional athletes privileged to play in the NBA right now, you have one job to do: work hard to stay in peak condition. That’s it. Protect your body and your skills, get in shape and stay that way. And yet when it was clear that the NBA season would start late, or perhaps not at all, how did the players respond? The majority trained less (or not at all) and figured they’d do the ‘real’ work when the season was ready to roll.

And as many found out, it was too late.

When did hard work become a skill?  It doesn’t take talent to work hard, anyone can do it. I ask—or rather demand—three things from my players: Show up, work hard, and listen. None of that takes skill. It takes a willingness to be dedicated, to improve, to be better. I don’t care if you’re a superstar or the weakest guy on the team, anyone can show up, work hard, and listen. Are you looking for a shortcut, or are you ready to do things the right way? Do you want it easy, or do you want it good?
One guy who took no shortcuts getting ready for the season was my client Kobe Bryant.  Given his history of injuries and his long list of accomplishments, it would have been easy for him to take the summer off, get some rest, and wait for the league to settle the labor situation. Instead, he wanted to spend the time working out, training, and preparing to be better than ever. So when most players were relaxing with light workouts that did nothing to prepare them for the rigors of the NBA season, Kobe and I were in the gym most of the summer and fall, finding new ways to make the best even better.

And when the season finally started on Christmas Day, when other players were still trying to find their legs and their shot, he was already mentally and physically prepared.  In the months that followed, he played relentlessly through a) knee pain, b) torn wrist ligaments, c) a broken nose, and d) a concussion, and did not miss a single game. Never asked to sit out, never took the shortcut. No one but Kobe can know the pain and discomfort he endured, but the hard work paid off; he was able to keep going. It wasn’t until he was kicked in the shin during a Hornets game that he was finally forced to sit for seven games, an unwanted rest that ultimately cost him the scoring title.

Could better training and conditioning have prevented every injury this season? Of course not. But many could have been prevented, or at least the consequences could have been lessened. If you want to be the best, you have to do the work. Excellence has no off-season.

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Who Knows What They Can Do Until Given An Opportunity by Mike Procopio

Like every game for the past 4 years I watched the contest between The Lakers and Thunder breaking down the game for Kobe and trying to pick up things to learn. It was an exciting game filled with WWE antics and heroic plays by both teams. It wasn’t a perfect game by any stretch as players on both teams struggled to make shots, although made shots when they counted.

What was encouraging to see was the two heroes for the Lakers who were buried on their bench for the whole year played major roles in their team’s success. Jordan Hill (acquired at the trade deadline), and Devin Ebanks(second year player who’s seen more action in the D League than on the Lakers) played big minutes down the stretch in the Lakers double overtime victory. Mike Brown did what few coaches do and that’s experiment with an unpopular lineup in the heat of the battle. Coaches for the most part go with players that they are comfortable with especially when things are going badly very rarely do you ever see them go with players that have been buried on their benches as long as Hill and Ebanks have. Both Ebanks and Hill aren’t perfect players by any stretch of the imagination. For Hill his offense on the block is lacking and isn’t he smartest big man out there. But, what he can do is impact the game with his activity level and his rebounding. As you can see with his 15 rebound performance in Sunday’s win he changed the game with his ability to get to balls and be active on the offensive glass giving the Lakers many second chance opportunities. For Ebanks his Achilles heel has always been his shooting. But what he can do is change the game with his ability to finish at the rim and guard people with his size and length. Too much has been made about what these players couldn’t do instead of what they could.

This whole season has been a constant reminder to players, coaches, and scouts that sometimes you don’t know the true value of your players that are sitting at the end of your benches until they are given an opportunity. Everyone on the planet has experienced Jeremy Lin’s success as he took the NBA by storm for the Knicks for almost two months. Lin sat on the bench for the Warriors and Rockets before lucking out with the injury situation for the Knicks, getting the opportunity to play big minutes and never looking back. Lin wasn’t the only one as players such as Avery Bradley(Boston Celtics), Gerald Green(NJ Nets), and John Lucas Jr (Chicago Bulls) all benefited from major minutes with their respective teams. Most if not all of the mentioned players were written off from the basketball world for one reason or another. They were wasting away on the end of benches in Green and Lucas’s case in the minor leagues and countries that most of us have never heard of. For coaches and scouts evaluating players for the top prospects have about a 70% success rate  when you are talking about lottery picks. Most players for the most part pan out when it comes to producing serviceable NBA players. Players selected in the second half of the first probably have about a 40% success rate. Evaluating players selected in the second round as well as un-drafted, free agent, and minor leagues are very hard to gage. Playing time is allotted to a team’s stars, serviceable veterans, and drafted rookies. Other players that are lucky enough to make teams have a tough time getting any day light to show what they can do. Unless their team is out of the playoff race early, injuries to 3-4 players, or trades involving less players coming back than sent out they will sit on the end of their team’s bench.

For a player, the message here is you always need to stay ready. There is no time to feel sorry for yourself or point fingers to your coach or anyone else why you aren’t getting any playing time. Many players who struggle to get minutes tend to lose focus and their attitude tends to dip. There is no time for finger pointing and blaming others. One thing about NBA veterans especially those who have been in it for a while understand it is a long season and they never know when their number will be called. They can go 10 games without playing and all it takes is one game for them to get back in the mix and have to provide minutes for their team. You never know when opportunity will knock on the door giving you a chance to show how you can help your team win. Basketball is a very tough sport to make a name for yourself in if you don’t carry a big name or reputation.  For most that opportunity will never come as sometimes it just isn’t your time. Jeremy Lin’s story is a fantastic one that has a E Hollywood Story written all over it. Here is a kid that was at the end of his team’s bench once given minutes turned into the NBA’s top 10 point guards almost overnight. If it wasn’t for having luck of multiple injuries to Knicks point guards for the most part Jeremy Lin would have never done anything worth writing about in his NBA career. What people should get out of his story is you never know when opportunity will come knocking. Until that happens you need to stay focused and prepared for your number to get called. Losers make excuses for never getting a chance and winners stay prepared for their time to come.

For a coach or scout you have to stop worrying about what players can’t do and concern yourself what skill they do have to help your team win games. There have been countless players written off for things that they couldn’t do. I remember people complaining about Rajon Rondo not being able to shoot coming into the draft. What they didn’t focus on is his ability to change speeds and get in the lane, vision/passing, and his unbelievable athletic ability. Kevin Love wasn’t athletic enough , but they forgot the fact that he was one of the smartest players in the league and can rebound at a level only a few that have ever played the game could.  The list goes on and on of players and what they couldn’t do. Most NBA players can only do 1 thing, but they do that one thing better than the majority of players in the world. I’ll be the first one to admit to writing off players that ended up bighting me in the butt a year or so later. Making mistakes is a part of life, it’s the people who learn from those mistakes and don’t repeat them who go on to do great things. As a coach try to give opportunities to players in practice as much as you can. Identify the one or two things that a player does well to help you win and plug them into a roll that can maximize that skill. If you have a shooting guard that can’t shoot, but can guard people and finish then on offense space them out on the weak side and have your players give them the ball on penetrate and kicks or doubles from the post. If your post player can’t score on the block or shoot, but can run the floor and dunk then put them in screen roll as well as rim running them in transition instead of running isolation plays for them. We can be here all day with examples of this, but you get where I am heading here.

Not everyone that sits at the end of your bench can be a Jeremy Lin. You can give them all the minutes and opportunity in the world and they will never produce the results that he did. Every player in the NBA can be productive as they are there for a reason. You need to put them in situations where they can help your team win. Sometimes you get a snapshot of a player and they don’t perform so the first thought that comes through your head is they can’t play especially if they are a young player. As a coach you need to have an open mind and continue to give them opportunities. Writing off players especially when it was only their first few games opens yourself up to make mistakes when evaluating their talent. You need to coach them up and build their confidence up to give them more opportunities. In basketball at some point players are who they are and it doesn’t matter how much coaching is done they will never live up to expectations and you have to face the facts. I have the philosophy for an NBA player that they are who they are after their rookie contract is up. After year five they are who they are. There are very few examples of players that make big jumps in development after year 5 in the NBA. Sometimes it takes players a few years to compete physically and/or mentally in the NBA, but usually by year 5 they hit their development plateau. I think back to Darko Milicic who is the punch-line to most NBA draft jokes. As most know he was selected second in the NBA draft ahead of Carmelo Anthony and Dwyane Wade among many other all-star players. He played for a team that was coming off an NBA championship coached by a very hard nosed coach in Larry Brown. Darko got very little opportunity and wasted away mentally as well as physically at the end of Detroit’s bench. By the time he was traded to Orlando he was only a shell of what he could have been. Obviously he may never have been as good as D Wade or Anthony , but if given the proper development and encouragement could have made a much bigger impact on the game. This isn’t a negative against the coaches that he had, but it just wasn’t the right fit for him as if he was in a situation that could have given him more minutes in a traditional lottery setting with a coach that could have catered to young players a little more things could have been different.

Opportunities in all stages of life don’t come very often. Sometimes you get labeled in life very early and can never move on from that label. It’s a way of life and very few can ever get out of it. You need to stay focused on the task at hand and stay prepared for opportunities that come your way. Sometimes you need to ignore labels and create your own opportunities. For those of you who are in positions of power paying attention to what others tell you only sets you up for failure. It is your job to investigate all assets that can help you be successful and put them in position to help you. Many players got to places on pure talent and reputation, but for a few they got there because of opportunities that were given to them. Basketball is a never ending popularity contest and it is very frustrating. There are many good players that never get a chance because they didn’t play in a certain league, don’t fit a certain mold,or aren’t a certain height. For most they are dismissed to the land of misfit toys because of things that they can’t do. Hopefully because of the play of Jeremy Lin and others like him that the landscape of basketball will change and more players will be given the opportunity to achieve their dreams.  For Jordan Hill and Devin Ebanks today may be the start of them helping to put energy on the Lakers second unit and help them win their 18th NBA Championship. All it took was  an opportunity.

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Enthusiasm Unknown to Mankind by Jon Gordon


When Jim Harbaugh, the head football coach of the San Francisco 49ers, was coaching the Stanford University football team his star player, Toby Gerhart, was asked how Stanford had become one of the top programs in the country.

Toby said that Coach Harbaugh was the main reason because he brings a ton of enthusiasm and passion to the team, inspires people to want to play at Stanford and makes everyone better.

Jim’s dad was the one who taught him the importance of enthusiasm.

Every day when his dad would take his brother John, who is also an NFL coach, his sister and Jim to school he would say to them,

“Attack this day with enthusiasm unknown to mankind.”

The Harbaugh children repeatedly heard this powerful and positive message and clearly their enthusiasm has become a huge part of their lives and careers.

Jim shared the same enthusiasm he did at Stanford with the 49’ers last year as a rookie NFL coach and transformed the team.

Research shows what we’ve always known to be true. Emotions are contagious. Studies conducted by HeartMath.org demonstrate that when you have a feeling in your heart it goes to every cell in the body and outward. Up to five to ten feet away people can sense feelings transmitted by your heart via electromagnetic signals.

This means that each day you are projecting enthusiasm and passion or apathy and indifference…and people can feel it.

That’s why when you walk into a restaurant, an office, a hotel, a football locker room, a hospital or a school you can feel the energy and get a sense of the culture, the people and their enthusiasm and passion.

Enthusiasm and passion attract people to you and make them want to get on your bus. And while they are on your bus your enthusiasm infectiously makes them better.

When you live and work with enthusiasm you not only create a more exciting life and career, you also inspire your team and customers to be excited about working with you.

So today I want to encourage you to heed the advice of Mr. Harbaugh and decide to:

Attack this day with enthusiasm unknown to mankind.

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No need for Bounties

This man needs no bounties. His passion and enthusiasm to play the game he loves is infectious. Ray Lewis loves to play football and he inspires greatness to all those around him through his EFFORT. Much has been made lately in the headlines about the New Orleans Saints and Defensive Coordinator Greg Williams placing “bounties” as a way to motivate his defensive players to make plays. Ray Lewis sees no need for bounties as he preaches that Greatness is between YOU and YOU and that EFFORT is generated from within.

I used videos of Ray Lewis with our CPA Basketball Team all year as we worked our way towards being a State Champion. I wanted our guys to play with an enthusiasm and an energy level that was contagious to the guy sitting next to him. I wanted our guys to speak words of life to each other- to be encouragers and to love each other in a way that would will others around them to think beyond themselves and that anything was possible.

Beyond the game, I want to live my life with a passion and a love for others and make an investment in other people that would inspire them to think that anything was possible. Isn’t that how Jesus lived- he never thought of himself and 24/7 thought of everyone around him and even in those moments 2000 years ago, he was thinking of me.

What is holding you back from greatness? Why do we need “bounties” to motivate us to be great? Who could God have you invest in today that could possibly change someone’s destiny-TODAY?

Greatness today is between YOU and YOU only! Will you be choose to be Great?

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Organized Bravery

By Seth Godin

The purpose of the modern organization is to make it easy and natural and expected for people to take risks. To lean out of the boat. To be human.

Alas, most organizations do the opposite. They institutionalize organized cowardice. They give their people cover, a place to hide, a chance to say, “that’s not my job.”

Our organizations are filled with people not only eager to dehumanize those that they serve, but apparently, instructed to do so. In the name of shareholder value or team play or not rocking the boat…

During times of change, the only organizations that thrive are those that are eager to interact and change as well. And that only happens when individuals take brave steps forward.

Giving your team cover for their cowardice is foolish. Give them a platform for bravery instead.

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Ray Lewis visits Elon Football Team. Inspirational Speech

Another powerful message by Ray Lewis to the Elon Football Team.

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Ray Lewis Motivational Speech to Hurricanes Players- Powerful!

This is powerful! Ray Lewis goes back to the University of Miami and gives an impactful message to the current Hurricane football team. There are truths that lie within this message.



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If your happiness is based on always getting a little more than you’ve got…

by Seth Godin


then you’ve handed control over your happiness to the gatekeepers, built a system that doesn’t scale and prevented yourself from the brave work that leads to a quantum leap.

The industrial system (and the marketing regime) adore the mindset of ‘a little bit more, please’, because it furthers their power. A slightly higher paycheck, a slightly more famous college, an incrementally better car–it’s easy to be seduced by this safe, stepwise progress, and if marketers and bosses can make you feel dissatisfied at every step along the way, even better for them.

Their rules, their increments, and you are always on a treadmill, unhappy today, imagining that the answer lies just over the next hill…

All the data shows us that the people on that hill are just as frustrated as the people on your hill. It demonstrates that the people at that college are just as envious as the people at this college. The never ending cycle (no surprise) never ends.

An alternative is to be happy wherever you are, with whatever you’ve got, but alway hungry for the thrill of creating art, of being missed if you’re gone and most of all, doing important work.

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