Chapter 8

Not All of Your Players (or Employees) Will Get Along with Each Other

The Other Side of Success

One reality of coaching that also applies to the business world is that even a little bit of success gets others to notice you and pay attention.

It happens every year: A coach takes a team on an unexpected run through the NCAA Tournament, whether on the men’s or women’s side, and suddenly, he or she is a hot name and is linked to every job opening available. Even though I knew this happened, it was not something with which I was entirely familiar or something I expected to happen to me. That was, until I got back home to Maine and my telephone rang.

Long Beach State University in California was looking for a new coach for their women’s team and wondered if I would be interested in talking to them. Sure, why not? Because I’m a Navy brat who enjoys traveling, seeing the world, and gathering information directly, it made sense to me to explore this opportunity.

I don’t know if I would have put down odds on the chance that I would accept a job offer had one been made, but I didn’t really see any harm in going out there and investigating the situation. Long Beach’s athletic director, Dave O’Brien, was a terrific person and talented at his job. His vision and support made an immediate impact on me.

One of the realities of coaching at Maine (which, again, is the situation at almost every mid-major) is that coaches always find themselves in some kind of budget crunch. There is never ...

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