In basketball, analyzing statistics has become the major trend. From college basketball to the NBA, analytics has been regarded as a key to understanding how to win basketball games. While I was at Caltech, we would get phone calls from NBA teams looking for student-athletes who would be interested in helping them with statistical analysis. There are many online tools that we can use to analyze the factors that might contribute to wins and losses. On such tool is EZANALYZE. This free tool is a Microsoft Excel Add-on that gives users a "point and click" option for analyzing data and creating graphs. It has advanced features that allow you to isolate data by breaking them down into categories or consider all the variables as a whole. However, its best feature is probably the most basic. It first and foremost, takes care of all the equations for statistical analysis (mean, median, deviation, and range), thus allowing you to focus on making sense of the data. As a basketball coach, I appreciate the fact that this add on is very user friendly and wont require me to be a mathematician. I would highly recommend this product to coaches and educators alike.
Maintaining a LinkedIn account and creating a personal website via Weebly.com have been a great way for me to have a professional online presence for prospective employers to view. Both of these professional portfolio hosting platforms have unique advantages that make me want to keep them. LinkedIn is the equivalent of the popular social media outlet, facebook. Like the Zuckerberg company, LinkedIn is widely so used, that it helps professionals like myself easily connect with people in our industries and beyond. LinkedIn has great features that allow you to showcase your experience and accomplishments within your profession. It is definitely a great way of keeping one's self relevant in a professional maner. Perhaps the only limitations LimkedIn has is its limit to customization. Weebly allows me to customize my professional portfolio with so much ease that I can recreate almost anything I like about LinkedIn. I can showcase myself by embedding, resumes, pictures, videos, and other relevant items and I can do all this with with much freedom in terms of customization. The only weakness I see in Weebly is the limitations it has in terms of people coming across my website. Unlike LinkedIn, which can actually find users I may know or might be interested in connecting with and vice versa, Weebly relies on the user to share their personal web address to others. Since I can link these two accounts together, I think I will keep the best of both worlds by maintaining both professional portfolio platforms.
Las Vegas is THE summer destination for all the entire basketball world. Coaching clinics/seminars are timed with the biggest summer basketball event in the world. The NBA summer league. Most summer basketball events are held walking distance away from where the games are played. Why? In the basketball coaching profession, face to face networking is by far the most effective strategy when trying to gain employment. I got my first job as an assistant coach after attending my first ever coaching clinic. I was still a player back then but I wanted to learn to be a coach on the floor. Long story short, I was offered a job and I had to officially retire as a basketball player. I think the biggest reason face to face networking is crucial in the coaching profession is because coaches hire their assistants based on vibe and eventually trust. It's not about what you know. It's how much a head coach can trust you.
While I do believe that face to face networking is the best way to connect for the purpose of getting a coaching job, we have to followup with digital contact. All coaches are "connected" now via the internet. I believe that as professionals, we need to take advantage of the access we have via the internet and other modern platforms.
As a grad student in Biola University's TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages), we were required by our professor to contribute to a course wiki that focused on ESL (English as a Second Language) lesson plans. I thought it was a great way to share our ideas and learn from each other as classmates. The great thing about the wiki is that we still have access to it as professionals. We can still contribute to it just we are still able to pull out lesson plans to help us in the classes we teach. Integrating wikis in education can only enhance learning. When I start teaching my first P.E. class, I think I will have students do some type of collaborative online activity using wikis. What about you guys?
Undoubtedly, wearables became a dictionary entry thanks to Google Glass. This was the future tech that all generations have been dreaming of. Google Glass is eyewear that pretty much functions like the Terminator's eyes, in that it provides the user access to features like hands free video recording, facial analysis, communications, and information search. The most obvious advantage for owning such a device would be the ability to access information while on the go. You would no longer need to take out your smart phone to look up something online or to check your email. If this wearable ever become as ubiquitous as phones, wearers could potentially allow law enforcement to access their cameras to find a criminal who's on the loose or a kidnap victim. All great right? Well the disadvantage for such a device are pretty much the advantages. If we are able to access information at will, there would be no reason for us to remember new information. There have been studies about the biological changes occurring in the brains of people who are "always on", people always glued to their phones and tablets. the brain adapts too well to their behaviors that it no longer stores information the way it would without outside assistance. Secondly, giving law enforcement access to Google Glass feeds would pretty much create the Orwellian society that many fear. We would pretty much be "big brother" nation. Sure we would like to save lives and apprehend criminals by helping the authorities but there would have to be definite legislation and guidelines to prevent any misuse of that kind of access. Now, do I want a pair? Yes.
As a player development coach, I have always been a believer in integrating video analysis in biomechanical skills training. Teaching skill specific movement in basketball is quite challenging when players do not see what they are doing right or wrong. In the 80's I remember Kareem Abdul Jabar training Vlade Divac when he first came to the US. Jabar used a large video camera and a bulky TV to show Divac what he was doing wrong. Before slow motion analysis apps like Ubersense, it would have cost a fortune for a coach like myself to have that kind of tech at my disposal. Now, I can just use my phone to help my clients become aware of how they move. The interface for these apps are just amazing.
For the record, I've always wanted to produce this one particular app with my computer science buddies. If anyone wants to partner up please let me know!
There have been many apps created for basketball shot charts. A shot chart is a way to keep track of which areas on the floor both teams are making and missing shots from. Some existing shot chart apps already do this. They even track individual player scoring areas and keep statistics for points. Since such an app already exists in both the IOS and Android platforms, what you may ask can I do to make it better. Well, knowing where players are making and missing shots from is great information to have. I would like to take it a notch higher by adding an option to identify what type of defense was being played. For instance, if player #4 shoots a 3 point basket, I would like to know if he is making it when my team is in man or zone defense. I would like to have the option of being able to customize the tags for the defense. For instance, if we were playing man, was it switching, sagging, etc. If we were in zone when the basket occurred, what type of zone was it. This way, we can see what defensive scheme is working during the game. This would be a great edge for coaches. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if top NCAA teams secretly have this.
If you ever decide to make this app, please let me in on it!