Pat Riley, Miami Heat Head Coach “Giving yourself permission to lose guarantees a loss.” Hunger is never present when a team is self-satisfied or proud.
Coach Belichick awards a prime parking spot to the player who is the most dedicated to the team’s off-season conditioning.
Pete Carrol’s (USC football coach) most important lesson- … “if you understand that every game is a championship game and you’re going ot give everything you possibly can in the preparation and participation of that game… that’s why we practice so fast and so hard every single day, every day of the year for six years.”
(Use after a loss) There is only one courage and that is the courage to go on dying from the past game lost, not to collect it, not to accumulate it, not to cling to it. We all cling to the past, and because we cling to the past we become unavailable to the present. Win the next one!
Greg Marshall, Winthrop Coach: After each game, Marshall awards an action figure of the late pro wrestler called Junkyard Dog to the player who played with the most grit. A friend of Marshall’s bought it on EBay, still in its box, and it sits above the locker of the winning player until the next game.
By EVAN GRANT / The Dallas Morning News firstname.lastname@example.org SURPRISE, Ariz. – Michael Young arrived at Rangers training camp Wednesday, put down his bags and stalked directly into manager Ron Washington's office, whereupon he bellowed the words, "Pickin' Ma-chine!" When Washington was Oakland's infield instructor, "Pickin' Ma-chine!" often rang out from the dugout whenever an A's player made a strong defensive play. It is Washington's trademark phrase, and it elicited a tongue-hanging-out laugh and what Young described as a 10-minute hug. When Mark Teixeira came to camp earlier in the week, he went through a normal workout. When he decided after the rest of the team was done that he wanted to take a little more work, he found Washington available and willing to hit him grounders for 30 minutes. Both instances help illustrate the story of the first week at Camp Wash. It is breezy and light, yet there is no mistaking that there is work to be done, and Washington is willing to do it. "I just love his enthusiasm and the effort he puts in on the field," Teixeira said. "When the manager is willing to work as hard as he is, it makes you feel good about working hard. From the time you get here in the morning until the time you leave, you feel better about yourself and your team." From the top on down, that feeling has been repeated across Surprise over the last week. It's a different camp than the Rangers have seen in at least a decade. Johnny Oates, who directed the team for seven springs, and Jerry Narron, who ran camp in 2002, were quiet on-field presences. Buck Showalter, who ran the last four camps, was taken with details but rarely interacted with players on the field. Under Showalter, the camp was efficient, if officious, for everyone. Fans stood behind a chain-link fence and had to try and peer through shrubs to watch the pitchers throw. Coaches had nameplates in front of their seats in the staff meeting room and were asked to wear red caps for workouts while the players wore blue. Complex employees were asked to hoist flags atop three poles – one of which flew the University of Texas flag when Roger Clemens visited camp – at the team's stretching field in addition to the ones that flew over the stadium. While the Rangers and Kansas City were handed identical training complexes in 2003, only the Rangers' side has the additional flag poles. Hard work with a smile is Ron Washington's style. Showalter zipped from field to field in a golf cart, never staying long in one place. His pre-camp meetings involved a tour of Luke Air Force Base one year and a stand-up comedian another. This year, the shrubs are gone, and fans have been invited some 30 feet closer to the pitchers. The assigned seating is gone. The flag poles are bare. Washington walks everywhere. And the pre-camp meeting lasted all of 20 minutes. "The message he gave was short and sweet," Young said. "It was, 'I'm here for you guys, and we're all here for each other.' It was basically, 'Let's make sure we have each other's back.' It's a great feeling knowing the manager has your back." Said reliever C.J. Wilson: "His talk was so personal. When he speaks, it's all completely original and from the heart. He put the responsibility in the middle of the [clubhouse], and now it's our responsibility to take him up on that." Though Washington's speech lacked theatrics, its message was remarkably similar to the one Bob Brenly delivered the Arizona Diamondbacks as Showalter's replacement in 2001. Brenly dropped a large player development manual written by Showalter on the ground and pulled out a cocktail napkin to show the team. The team went on to win the World Series. "I pulled it out and I said: 'These were the rules last year. These are the rules this year: Be on time and get the job done,' " Brenly told the New York Times after the World Series. "I just felt in my first meeting as manager in front of the team, you wanted them to understand we were going to be loose and we were going to have fun, and I expected them to conduct themselves like professionals." It seems as if everybody who has happened through Rangers camp this spring has gotten the same message. "The players are just more relaxed," owner Tom Hicks said Saturday at the end of his two-day visit to camp. "I've had numerous players come up to me and say they feel they've been given the responsibility to take, and they feel it's up to them to get it done." Said Young: "The last few years we've been a third-place team, and we have to take responsibility for that. At the same time, we hope to move. We don't have 1,000 things going here. It's simple, basic and fundamental. It's all about working, having fun and winning." For a week, the Rangers have done nothing but the first two. They await the chance to accomplish the third.