Fans do not understand coaching (former player perspective)
Updated: Mar 21, 2021
As a former player it is frustrating to hear fans blame coaches for what happens on the court. Close to 99.9% of all fans never played a second of college basketball, but they sure seem to have an opinion on whom is at fault when things do not go their way. Our coaches gave us the tools to create opportunities to succeed and win, but we still had to perform. My teammates and I have played in games where we shot 30% for the game, despite open looks all day. Games where we played high level defense, but the opponent drained circus shots. Coaches drill you on your strengths and weaknesses, and provide a roadmap to your opponents tendencies to present matchup opportunities. Players play, coaches do not, but it is easier to vent your anger to one person than it is to 12 players. You cannot fire 12 guys, either.
In college basketball the coach is also the general manager putting together the right pieces for the program. Unlike the pros here or overseas, the coach has to convince a player to come to his program and cannot select them in a draft or through free agency. A pro coach has more options to build his team and less surprises to deal with. Pro players are under contract and cannot leave, but college players can by entering the draft early, or transferring to another program. This is why very few pro coaches come to the college ranks because the job isn't worth it. More stress, less money, dealing with obsessed fan bases and boosters, and hoping your team of young men perform under the bright lights while adhering to team rules.
Coach Wojo will be on the sidelines again coaching before too long.