The first step toward getting closer to making the leap into college coaching is an easy one. By making the decision that you will take any job you can get to start out is the best way to approach it. Too often young coaches wait for the “right position” to come along instead of rolling up their sleeves and getting dirty. I teach a proven system that has helped over 80 coaches reach the collegiate level. This article is full of tips and advice on how to turn dreams into reality.
Making assumptions on the job market in college basketball is a common mistake by prospective coaches. There are about 6,000 college coaching jobs including all collegiate levels in our country. The number of job available and the type of positions that come open will depend on the level. Division I schools have up to 7 positions that make up their total staff. An NAIA school may have a head coach with multiple duties and possibly an assistant position.
Future college coaches must become students of the industry and thoroughly investigate all levels and programs. The type of jobs available today include:
1. Head Coach
2. Assistant Coach–Full time, full pay
3. Unpaid Assistant Coach–Full time coaching duties with no pay
4. Volunteer Assistant Coach–Limited duties
5. Graduate Assistant–Coach and work on your degree
6. Graduate Manager–Go to school on your own and help out the program
7. Director of Basketball Operations–A non-coaching position but a great way to break in
8. Video Coordinator–Your job is video, video, video!
9. Grab Bag–I’ve heard of all kinds of positions like recruiting coordinator, assistant recruiting coordinator, camp director, assistant video director, or “sandwich boy.”
The attitude I encourage coaches to have is one of abundance, not scarcity. Thinking that each school will have “some kind” of position available should be your thought process. Think of things in this manner: What are you really after?
A graduate assistant position or just any coaching position? . I believe that a graduate degree is nice to get along the way, but if you are truly focused on reaching your goal of coaching in college, you must eliminate the obstacle of the graduate degree. Why? When you look only at GA coaching positions you easily cut your opportunities in half! When you are just trying to get your foot in the door you need to get involved in as many jobs as possible. You want the numbers on your side, not against you. I’ve known guys that had the ability to pursue 30 jobs at the same time and manage them all. In the end, he always CHOSE the job he wanted the most. You must look at it as a numbers game. Reality and history say that those trying to enter college coaching have a very small chance to get one of them. Let’s say 10%. So if you go after 10 jobs as hard as you can, you will be very fortunate to get one.
Now, if you go after 30 jobs as hard as you can, then your chances are much greater. Even with that effort, you still may not land a job. Do you know the effort, hours, and perseverance it takes to actively pursue 10 jobs? Ask someone who has and it will explain why 90% of the young guys that “say they want to be college coaches” have no clue what it takes. Bottom line is that this 90% know what they WANT, but do not have or are not willing to commit and invest into the process it will take to go after 10 jobs! If seen it hundreds of times! The good news is that YOU may be a part of the 10% and if that is true, you have a shot at landing a job………not a guarantee by any means, but a shot. That’s all you can ask for!
Determine HOW bad you want to do this, then make a plan and go for it. My Teleseminar, “The Path to College Coaching” will greatly enhance your chances and reduce wasted effort as your pursue your dream job.