Question: School tryouts, never played school basketball, what to expect? My school tryouts are next week for basketball, but I have never played organized ball. I’ve only played pick-up games, street games. So, all these plays — cutting this way, that way — is new to me.
What should I expect at a school basketball tryout?
Answer: Expect to be nervous. Get warmed up. The jitters won’t last for long. Expect to make a few mistakes. Your basketball IQ will likely be a weakness, but that’s OK if you show the coaches a willingness to learn (don’t be afraid to ask questions). Expect tough competition from new and returning players who want a spot on the team just as much as you do. You will need to EARN your spot AND their respect. And, most importantly, expect tryouts to be a great experience that you’ll ALWAYS remember whether or not you make the team. Enjoy every moment!
When I conduct varsity basketball tryouts each year, I look for students with serious talent and experience, of course, but I also look for those students who possess 4 KEY attributes that are even more meaningful to our successful season:
1. HUSTLE all practice long. Fight for every loose ball and rebound. If a coach calls you over, run it in. It shows me that you would bring great energy to my practices and that necessary spark we need in games. I love it!
2. SPEAK UP! Call out the name of the person you’re passing to. I want to hear you shout things like “PICK,” “I GOT IT,” and “BALL, BALL.” Also, THANK the teammate who provided you the assist. Be the best cheerleader out there — on court and from the sideline. Help your teammates by encouraging them. It will boost their confidence and improve their performance. It shows that you understand that basketball is a team sport, and you would fit nicely on my roster.
3. LISTEN. If you’re not clear, ask the coach to repeat. If you’re speaking while I’m speaking, you’re not listening — that’s disrespectful. If you can’t listen, you won’t play for my team. Maintain eye contact, and speak clearly and confidently: “Yes sir.” “No sir.”
Heard, understood, acknowledged!
4. Be ENTHUSIASTIC. I’m looking for students who appear to enjoy playing basketball as much as I enjoy coaching the game. S\he will develop and grow as an important part of my team, because they will be eager to learn. Enthusiasm is infectious, so enjoy the game. Coaches will want to keep you around!
Have fun and Good Luck!
Coach Carl Parker