I would like to thank all of the young coaches in America for stopping by today to review these notes I took from the class Geno Auriemma gave Friday on coaching and relaxation.
If you are the high-strung type, you already know who hard it is to get to sleep at night. Auriemma understands this and is very sympathetic.
So please sit down. Find a No. 2 pencil with a fresh eraser and a notebook and learn from the eight-time national champion:
“I don’t think you ever learn completely [how to relax],” Auriemma said. “My parents worked in a factory and when they came home after their shifts were done they were on their own. They didn’t worry about a thing. It was someone else’s problem at that point.
“But as head coach, you are kind of like an entrepreneur running your own little business. You never can get away from it. It is with you all the time, even when you think you can step away from it. You can’t.
“And you only get better at it [finding times to relax] when you start winning games and championships and you feel comfortable in the formula you have for winning and your program on solid ground.
“But that takes a long time. And even at that point, you are faced with a different type of pressure; to keep it going, to be as good as people think you should be. When you are building a program, it’s really hard because you are grinding it every day. Every little thing means something. Every possession in a game could mean the difference. Every game could be the difference between making the NCAA Tournament or not. When you are in that scenario, it is very difficult to get away from it, to relax. You have to work very hard.
“At my age, it’s not as hard. But I face a different kind of pressure.”