Guts and Glory

Guts and Glory

Postby Wayne23 » Thu Jul 11, 2019 7:39 pm

Guts and Glory

I guess maybe your name is your destiny. At least I think mine is. I’m Joe Guts, well, Joseph, but yeah.

Nobody ever gave me nothing. The only road I know is the hard road. But hey, it’s getting me somewhere, finally.

All my life it’s been my ambition to be a head basketball coach at a Division I school. It finally happened. I just got hired at tiny little Bryant, here in Smithfield, RI, a town so small that if you blink driving through, you’ll miss it. But hey, I’m here.

Let me tell you a little about how I got here at age 35, which I just turned.

I grew up in Cranston, down the road a little. It’s a tough, hard nosed town and you need to be tough to get anywhere there. My father worked in the mills and my mother was a waitress at the diner. We had enough money to get by, but just.

I played power forward in high school, and then at URI. I was good enough to get an athletic scholarship or I couldn’t have gone to college. First two years there I sat the bench, learned the system, worked my ass off- I’ve always worked my ass off.

Junior year I got into most of the games, usually for 5-8 minutes. Senior year I was the first big guy off the bench. I was never a star, just a hard working stiff who gave it all I had.

When I graduated I got a job as head basketball coach and Phys. Ed. teacher at Cranston High. I was there for 8 years. My eighth year we lost the state championship game. Then I got hired as #3 assistant at URI. It was nice to go back home!

Last year I got promoted all the way to the #1 assistant job and when the Bryant job opened up about a month ago I applied. Didn’t hear a thing and I forgot about it.

Then a week ago I got a call asking me to come down for an interview. I figured their first choice, maybe their first few choices, had declined the job. That doesn't worry me at all. It's my job now and I'll take it any way I can get it.

Anyway, they hired me yesterday. Now I need to put a program together. Okay, here’s how I roll. I’m very ambitious. I hope to go as far as I can in coaching, hopefully all the way to a big time school like UConn, Duke, UCLA- one of those; that will take a lot of time and probably a lot of luck, but if you don’t aim high you don’t get anywhere. Second, I’m big on academics. We’ll keep a close eye on the kids and make sure they do everything they’re supposed to do in the classroom. I’m not the brightest guy in the world but I graduated with a 2.9 GPA- all due to hard work. Third, I play it 100% straight at all times. Fourth, I am a STRICT disciplinarian. If you play for me or work for me you do what you’re supposed to do and you do it to the very best of your ability- 100% of the time. If not, there will be hell to pay. And yeah, I’ve got a temper. I do my best to control it but I’ve been known to lose it at times.

As to my approach to the game I’m very big on three things, Defense, defense, and defense. Along with that comes rebounding and ball handling. I run Motion and Princeton against man, and the usual zone offenses. On D, while I’d like to go all man to man that’s not practical. I go about 50% man, 25% 2-3, 25% 3-2. I only press when I have to. It takes too many resources and doesn’t do that much good. I practice about ¾ D, ¼ O. And I practice hard. I stop to let guys know what they did wrong and how to fix it, and on the rare occasions they get it right I stop to let them know. We run sets in practice, both O and D, and we do game situation stuff. I don’t spend a lot of time just scrimmaging. There’s too much else to do.

A kid who’s the sensitive type won’t make it playing for me. I WILL be on your case no matter who you are and wherever you are I will demand that you work like hell to reach the next rung on the ladder.

I got no qualms. Bryant’s recruiting class was ranked #238. This ain’t Kentucky. But we’ll work hard, we’ll get better, and we’ll do okay in the Northeast Conference. Or else!

Personal life? I’m a pussycat at home. My wife, Rhoda is the boss. She fully supports me in my work, and she understands that I’ll be working long hours. The time we have together will be limited, but we’ll try to make the most of it. We been together for 20 years. We met when I was 15, she was 14, and there’s never been anyone else I was interested in. My boy, Joe, Jr., is 9. He’s a soccer player, sad to say. My girl, Rhonda, is 7. She likes basketball but she’s more of the scholarly type I think., already a big reader.
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