Brent Tipton

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Twitter – @BrentETipton

Brent Tipton will be entering his first season as an assistant coach of the Men’s U19 Team at the Porsche Basketball Academy in Germany.  Brent’s coaching journey began in 2012 as the Head Coach of the U18 Guam Men’s National team. From 2012-2021, he served numerous coaching positions within the Guam Basketball Federation. He served as Head Coach of Guam’s U15, U17 and U18 Men’s National Basketball teams, Head Coach of Guam’s Senior Woman’s National Team, and Assistant Coach for Guam’s Senior Men’s National Team.

While serving with the Guam Basketball Federation, Brent also started the men’s basketball program at The University of Guam in 2016. During the inaugural season of 2016 and without the opportunity to recruit athletes, the University of Guam Tritons won only two games. The following season and with the first recruiting class, the UoG Tritons finished 30-0, capturing both the Guam Basketball Association championship and the Guam College Basketball League championship. In 2019 and after three seasons with the Tritons, Brent resigned from the head coach position to focus more on his responsibilities within the Guam Basketball Federation and join Guam’s Men’s Senior National team coaching staff.

Brent is a 2018 graduate of the FIBA Europe Coaching Certificate. The FECC is the most prestigious coaching program in Europe for basketball with its focus on developing basketball players at the youth level. Brent is also a graduate of the Basketball Australia Emerging Coach Initiative earning the Basketball Australia High Performance Coach accreditation and Coach Developer accreditation.

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Take some notes while you listen tot this episode with Brent Tipton, Men’s U19 Assistant Coach at the Porsche Basketball Academy in Germany.

What We Discuss with Brent Tipton

  • His first memory of the game playing hoops at recess with his buddies
  • “Basketball has always been the compass of my life.”
  • Using the environment of the game to shape players’ learning
  • The importance of imagination in the game
  • Peer evaluation vs. Parent or Coach evaluation
  • The Rule of Three – 1. Self-Correct 2. Teammate-Correct 3. Coach-Correct
  • Why a shared vocabulary is critical when using a games-based approach
  • Players need to have terms that define the skills that they are using
  • “I believe in showing them through film and then breathing that terminology and vocabulary into them on the practice court.”
  • Players learn faster when they have words to define the concepts they are applying
  • What he learned from his father, who coached him in high school
  • How he ended up in Guam after college and got his first experience as a coach
  • “Our greatest fear in life should not be the fear of failure, but succeeding at things in life that don’t really matter.”
  • Figuring out your life’s calling as a parent, spouse, and coach
  • “How we’re going to develop players is ultimately dependent upon how I’m going to develop as a coach.”
  • “The faintest of pen is better than the sharpest of memory.”
  • The value of meditation, journaling, and reading
  • How the opportunity to work with Porsche Basketball Academy in Germany came to him
  • “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.”
  • “Every time I get asked a question, I get exposed on a knowledge gap. And so it’s really a great way for me to learn from other coaches.”

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[00:00:00] Mike Klinzing: [00:00:00] Hello, and welcome to the Hoop Heads Podcast. It’s Mike Klinzing here with my co-host Jason Sunkle tonight, and we are pleased to welcome to the podcast, the assistant coach for the men’s under 19 team for the Porsche Basketball Academy. Brent Tipton. Brent, welcome to the Hoop Heads Pod.

Brent Tipton: [00:00:16] Mike, thank you for the opportunity to be on the podcast.

I listen to your podcasts all the time. I’ve had friends on the pod and you know, it’s really an inspirational podcast because you go through the life of coaches and it’s really an honor to be here. So thank you for the opportunity.

Mike Klinzing: [00:00:34] Absolutely thrilled to have you on you. And I got to meet in person out at snow valley in Iowa this year and everything that I saw you do both out on the floor.

And just as a human being, getting an opportunity to talk to you and get to know you over those couple of days made you one of the people that I was most excited to be able to have on the show, to be able to talk to you, to dig into your background, to be able to share with our audience. [00:01:00] All the great things that you share with me, share with the kids, share with the coaches at snow valley.

So I am whatever, however, whatever level of excitement you have, my excitement is right there matching you if not exceeding it. So welcome to the hoop heads, pod, excited to have you want to go back in time to when you were a kid and start there, tell us a little bit about how you got into the game of basketball when you were younger and what it was like for you growing up

Brent Tipton: [00:01:24] Right? That’s a great way to reminisce about how it all happened, because I don’t really do that on a daily basis for sure. When you asked that question, the very first memory that, that goes back to when I played basketball, when I was in second grade, me and my buddies were not playing on the playground on the merry-go-round or on the swings or going down the slides.

We were on the outdoor basketball. Playing two on two and three on three. And that’s the very first memory that I have of playing basketball was in [00:02:00] second grade, a friends like Jonathan Devolt, who I haven’t spoken to since maybe third grade, Danny Burgess. I mean, these are, these are some names I haven’t said and you know, probably 25 years maybe.

Yeah. About 25 years. That’s the first memory that I have played in. I remember it was during the month of March that I think it was Kentucky vs Duke. It was my, it might’ve been. In 1996 when Kentucky won their first championship with Tubby Smith. And I remember my friend was a Duke fan and my teacher called for us to line up and me and my buddies were coming back it back into line with the rest of the class, chanting duke, duke, duke, duke, duke.

And that’s just kind of goes back to really my first memory of having that orange ball in my hands. You know, if it’s in March, we were probably playing in the cold with no jackets, but you know, it’s just a great memory. And thank you for asking that question.

Mike Klinzing: [00:02:59] It’s funny to [00:03:00] think back to what your first memory is of the game.

And I don’t know if I’ve ever shared this on the pod, but my first memory of basketball is from first grade. And I remember I had, and I had to have things that happened before this, but for whatever reason, this one sticks out at me that I had a bunch of friends for my birthday party and my dad always had my basket set lower.

So when I was in first grade, my basket, it was. Six and a half feet or seven feet, something like that, maybe. And I just remember that at that first grade birthday party, we all just went outside and played basketball. So we had whatever our meal, we had a cake and then boom, we were outside and we were playing basketball on my birthday’s in March.

So I was probably out there in the cold and just like you were, and it’s funny to think about kind of how you start and then how things go from there was basketball, your only sport, your main sport. What did you play? When did you start to get more serious about it? Just kind of give us the lay of the land of your childhood, kind of going through everything that you did with [00:04:00] athletics.

Brent Tipton: [00:04:00] Sure. Yeah. That’s great. No, I basketball was the only sport that I played. I wish I would have gotten to play other sports, but I was reading back through a couple of entries in my journal that the last couple of weeks, and I had written that basketball has always been the compass of my life.

So. Looking back over every memory, a memory that I have and every relationship that I have all the way dating back to that second grade memory has always been involved with the game of basketball. So I think I really dive deep into wanting to become a real player in seventh grade. My father was my middle school coach and then eventually became my high school coach.

So I remember him talking to my older brother who was a sophomore at the time I was in seventh grade. And I remember him talking to my brother at the, at the dinner table one night saying how we need, we need somebody on our team that can hit the baseline, a [00:05:00] baseline corner shot. And I remember my dad saying that and I was I was thinking, okay, well, I can, I could become that person who can hit that corner based baseline shot.

I literally shot only shots from the baseline. And all I would do is I’d spin that ball out to the corner gun inside foot pivot had no idea what that was at the time. And then I would shoot that baseline shot. I’d do it hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of times throughout that whole summer. And you know, I was probably in the seventh grade and then along with that summer, I had the goal.

I lived in a subdivision. And the subdivision street was about a mile or half a mile long. So if you started at my house and you would walk down to the subdivision street, back to my house, it was about a mile. So my goal that summer, this was seventh grade was to dribble between my legs, the entire mile, without the ball lead in my hands.

And so dribbling between your legs [00:06:00] with perfection was my goal. And then by the end of that summer, I had accomplished that. So those were kind of some, some things that I had done when I was a kid to, to, to challenge myself because we didn’t have a, you, we didn’t have trainers. You know, I was my, my trainer and my imagination.

Yeah, my competition during the summertime when I couldn’t play with my friends. And so once, once that happened, I saw some success in seventh grade. I played for a really, really small Christian school. So basketball was really the, the main sport at that Christian school. But I really fell in love with it as I continued to hone my craft and into my, my freshman, my sophomore junior year.

And then I really decided my senior year that I, we all have this dream that we want to play in the NBA or play professionally overseas. But I think it was during that senior season. I realized I wasn’t that good because I wasn’t getting recruited. But that’s when I discovered a [00:07:00] true, I guess, a life calling with the sport as a player.

And then I realized I wanted to play in college and I eventually did go to play in college. But I think it was that, that senior year where I had to have basketball in my life every single day in order to just be happy. And I think a lot of, a lot of coaches can kind of attest to having those same sentiments towards the game.

But it has always truly been a compass in my life, keeping me on the straight and narrow and helping me make great decisions and choices when I was in high school and into college. So I guess that would be kind of the rough draft of how the game has impacted me over the course of my high school years.

Mike Klinzing: [00:07:39] So two points that I want to pull out from what you said, one is the contrast between how you worked on your game and tried to improve and get better. Being creative and walking the life of your street, dribble the ball between your legs and not doing it with the aid of a [00:08:00] trainer, not doing it without all the AAU basketball that we have today.

And we’ve gotten into this discussion numerous times, Brent, with different people about how they grew up in the game and how it’s different. And there’s obviously pluses and minuses to both systems, but I always find it interesting when I talk to guys who are a little bit older, who went in to their training without the aid of, of somebody else telling them what to do.

And instead you just kind of had to figure it out. And I think there’s tremendous value in that. I bet that if we had to really dive down deep on it, that you’d probably agree that you got, you got more out of that. Being able to think about it and being able to figure it out yourself and there was benefits.

And yet at the same time, I think that so many kids today are also exposed to so much better coaching. At the younger levels. You just think about what we saw at snow valley, where those kids who are in middle school, the type of coaching that they got exposed to. I don’t know about you, but I never got exposed to that type of coaching when I was in middle school.

[00:09:00] Brent Tipton: [00:09:00] Yeah. That’s, that’s a hundred percent true. And I think we’re starting to see a shift in coaching education to more of a, like the term is ecological dynamics. Like the concept is ecological dynamics where we’re going to use the environment of a game or the environment of a practice to shape players learning.

And I think we’ve kind of, kind of gone to a Going back to using our imagination as a kid, I’m not get back to why I mentioned ecological dynamics, but I remember in 2000 when Michigan state won the one of the championship off, off of Mateen cleaves, he was the point guard with Tom Izzo and Michigan state.

I remember him sprained his ankle, but I also remember him hitting big free-throws and a big shot with it, like within a minute left to go in the game. After that game, I went outside and I mimicked that shot probably a hundred times because of the impact [00:10:00] that scene Mateen cleaves hit that shot and the reaction he had, he was doing a little dance with his hands and I mimicked that probably about a hundred times, but that’s how I think you yourself included.

That’s how we used our imagination. Then we went and now we’ve gone to a phase where players don’t have the imagination. So where coaches are trying to tell them everything that they need to do. But then now I think we’re going to see in the next five to 10 years, another shift in a coaching and coaching education and coaching environment on us as coaches are kind of getting back to how we were coached 30 years ago, but more of a evidence-based research side to coaching and creating that imagination employers.

And so I think that imagination is so critical and players being good and players being skillful and kind of going back to just the pure love of playing the game, whether that’s just playing by themselves in a gym by themselves, or even with their friends. American basketball [00:11:00] in particular has been so weighted down by training and trainers that I could maybe argue that the game hasn’t the become as fun or is as fun as what it could be.

And so I think that kind of goes back to our upbringing as older coaches or as players who played in the nineties. That’s just what was common. We would go to the playground and play, or if we didn’t have friends to play with, then we would use our imagination to play on our driveway or so, or as such.

Mike Klinzing: [00:11:31] That’s a great point when I think about what’s more fun to go and work with a trainer for an hour. And even if you’re working with a great trainer, who’s making things as fun as possible. It still doesn’t seem like that would be as fun as just going up to the playground and plan five on five or playing two on two in the driveway or whatever it might be.

And I think your point about creativity is really well-taken. When I think about a player [00:12:00] being creative, I think about a player who has a great feel for the game and just an understanding of how to play. And there are some players who are really skilled, but they have no feel. They have no creativity.

They have no ability to play within the dynamics of a game with teammates. But if you just throw them in a gym with some cones or get them, put them through a workout, they’re going to look tremendous, but then you put them in a five on five situation and they just have no idea how to interact with the other nine players out on the floor.

And I think that creativity that you or I, or Jason gained from playing on the playground or playing in the driveway where there wasn’t a coach watching you, where there wasn’t a parent watching you, where you always, where there isn’t a scoreboard. I think it always puts pressure on kids. I have to perform at my best that I have to do the things I’m good at because somebody is always watching.

Like, I don’t have an opportunity [00:13:00] today to go up to the playground and maybe I’m the best player there for whatever reason. And I decide, well, today I’m only going to drive to my left and shoot left-handed layups because I’m a lot better than the other players in this game. And I can work on something kids today.

Don’t get that opportunity. I think they miss out on building that creativity. I think they’re more skilled today than they’ve ever been just in isolation. But to your point, I think that creativity is a huge piece of what kids are, are lacking today. So when you look at that and you think about it and you think about that shift, that’s coming.

Do you think that that’s, I guess I’ll call it the games based approach. Do you think that that games based approach to practice is what’s going to help to enable that shift back towards creating more creative players?

Brent Tipton: [00:13:48] Yeah, I do. As best as I can. I try to adopt that gains based approach to coaching and kind of going back to having the AAU [00:14:00] style or having parents and the gym, as opposed to just playing on the playground.

And when you’re on the playground, your mistakes are, are peer evaluated as opposed to coach evaluated or our parent evaluated. And so, because it’s periodic, you waited, you’re, you’re gonna play a lot harder when you’re playing you know, pick up ball on the playground. But also I think that kind of going back to the creativity piece I think you’re able to be more creative because your mistakes are only going to be peer evaluated.

And after that game has done, you just going to move on to the next game or, or to whatever you’re doing next. But I think the games based approach to to coaching has all of this in mind, because. The games based approach to coaching wants to mimic the same environment that a kid is going to get in a game or in a pickup game.

But with the other side of it, of them actually learning something or them seeing [00:15:00] a skill application or a skill adoption, really in an environment that’s controlled by the coach, but it’s an environment that is directly translatable to what that player is going to face in a game. And I think that that is the next phase of coaching that coaches who are younger and have been exposed to this I guess coaching philosophy players are really going to start experiencing that.

And I, and I think it’s cyclical, same things are cyclical, but just as players are getting more skilled and becoming more skilled on the court, coaches are becoming a lot better at teaching the skill. When they can apply this games based approach to coaching. Now that skill makes sense to a player because the coach has designed a session or a practice environment that been the game, the game itself.

And I think that is the reason why gains based approach to coaching is so effective. And I think over the next couple of [00:16:00] years, we’re really going to see that this is the trend in coaching,

Mike Klinzing: [00:16:05] I think you’re right. And I think one of the things that I’m going to speak personally, that I’ve struggled with whenever I try to use the games based approach, which I do all the time now, but I still feel inside of my own mind.

It’s always a struggle for me to figure out when do I step in with quote unquote coaching and when do I let the players play through their mistakes and make those decisions and try to understand. On their own. And maybe I just pop, pop in and ask a question. So how do you think about that? Or how do you approach that piece of it where you set up again, a practice that’s you know, based on, based on a games based approach and then how much intervention feedback are you giving, how do you think about that particular aspect [00:17:00] of coaching from a game-based perspective?

Brent Tipton: [00:17:03] That’s a really great question. My mind immediately goes to the rule of three. So when you were in practice the rule of three just basically means that first rule is allow a player to self-regulate or a self-correct. And so if we’re we’re in a scenario in practice and the player doesn’t self-correct, then I’m not, I may not step in and correct him immediately because the second rule of three says that if a player doesn’t self-correct, then a teammate needs to come in and, and self-correct the player who made the mistake.

Then the last rule, the rule of three is going to, is going to be basically to where now I have to come in with coach intervention to help with that player, his mistake. And so if we are obviously players, aren’t going to know every in and out of, of coaching and, and detail it to what we want to teach in a drill.

But if they can self-regulate, [00:18:00] then we’re going to have a really good player. And what makes a strong team is if a teammate makes a mistake and a teammate can come in and, and give correction and feedback to help that player with his mistake, then. I don’t have to step in and intervene, which may seem like I’m not doing anything as a coach, but I believe that that is what coaching is all about is helping the players discover for themselves one how they can self-regulate self-correct on their mistake because of the level of detail that I give them over the course of a session or a season, but then empowering players who are teammates that when a player makes a mistake to give them the platform to help their teammate, self-correct whether that’s a behavioral mistake an emotional mistake, a technical or tactical mistake.

And then at the very least I will step in. And if I come in to step in on a player mistake and I have to intervene, and then Peter Lonergan talks a lot about coaching and soundbites as opposed to coaching and soliloquy. [00:19:00] So when a player makes a mistake, do we have short, descriptive cues that can label the mistake and in, in a three word phrase.

Can we label the mistake and then give the player a chunk of information in that phrase to help them correct themselves or to give them feedback. And so that kind of comes down to our language that we use our terminology, and I believe that that will help in creating this really an environment that is centered around a games based approach, but using the rule of three to help players correct themselves or a teammate help correct another teammate.

And then at the very least myself stepping in with the coach intervention,

Mike Klinzing: [00:19:40] That terminology is really key. There’s no question about that. I think if you’re going to be effective as a coach with the games based approach, I think you have to have that terminology down where your players understand in those quick soundbites, as you said exactly what you want.

And I think if I go back to that rule of [00:20:00] three and I’m thinking about what my role is as a coach, One of the things that’s going through my mind as you’re talking there, Brent is okay. First thing, the player has to be able to self-correct. So we know that players aren’t always the best at self-correcting.

And then the second step is if the player doesn’t self-correct teammate has to be willing to step in and correct their teammate, which we know isn’t always easy for one peer or one teammate to do with another teammate. So as a coach, what is your role in preparing or helping the players to a be able to self-regulate and then B how do you help them to be able to understand how, when, why they should step in and intervene when a teammate makes a mistake?

Cause I don’t think those are things that happen naturally. So how do you approach that as a coach to make sure that your players have those two skills. [00:21:00] Which can maximize what you’re doing as a coach?

Brent Tipton: [00:21:03] Well, that’s a great question. My mind immediately goes to having a shared vocabulary. So a shared vocabulary is, is naming the C a M is naming a skill.

So for instance we can use the example of a screener in the pick and roll of set and ball screens. And so can we name a skill so that players can know what the chunk of information is to apply a skill? So for instance, if a boss screen screeners trying to set a ball screen we want them to sprint the string.

So I’m going to give them a chunk of information of sprinting to this screen of how to set the screen, where their feet should be setting the cover’s dependent screen based upon the pick and roll covers that defense is going to employ at the point of the screen. But during the course of the game, and even during the course of practice, I don’t have time to talk in [00:22:00] a talk, a paragraph of teaching points to this player where they make a mistake or just if it’s just a reminder.

So having a shared vocabulary like arrive alone, Means I want them to sprint to this screen. I want them to come without their man. I want them to set their screen at a certain angle. Let’s say it’s at the back pocket of the on-body thunder. Well, that’s a mouthful for us coaches to say, but if I have this shared vocabulary, not only can I say, Hey, arrive alone, but players can help each other.

Self-correct if they didn’t arrive alone, or if they did arrive alone, they have this background knowledge onto why we’re saying this certain phrase or having a shared vocabulary on the court. So the biggest thing that when, if we’re going to enable players to self-regulate and to correct themselves, they have to have terms that define what they are doing.

They have to have terms that define the skills that they are using. And so if we can have this shared vocabulary where [00:23:00] the coaching staff is on the same page, the players know what that vocabulary means. They know our term terminology. Then, then we can help help player self regulate, but also that enables us for an opportunity to, to to coach on the fly.

So just a really quick thought here. And then a question to ask is, is my terminology and teaching phrases simple enough and descriptive enough where a word or a phrase content can contain an entire paragraph of teaching. And so we want to make sure that the way we coach enables a player best to learn.

And so that’s, I believe that comes back to our shared vocabulary and instead of. Coaching and soliloquy and given a clinic to a player, when you make some mistake or to explain a concept, we’re going to give them a short, descriptive cue, like for a screener and a screen to arrive alone. At the point of the screen, we all know what that means.

Now. Players can keep each other accountable with those concepts, whether that’s offensively or defensively. But I think it all goes back [00:24:00] to us having a shared vocabulary.

Mike Klinzing: [00:24:02] Let me ask you this. Cause we’ve had this discussion with several of the coaches that we’ve had on in terms of making sure that you have that terminology down, that your team and your coaching staff is all on the same page.

And I’ve heard this from both sides of this, this issue. Do you have, when you’re putting together this terminology with your team, is this something that you write down and have like a team dictionary where it’s actually written on paper or on a computer? That you share with the players or is it more just sort of an oral history type thing that you’ve taught it, you’ve gone over the phrasing and now because players hear it so frequently, it just kind of becomes ingrained into the culture of what you do everyday.

So I guess the question is for you personally, do you write that down and compile it into a document that everybody sees or is it [00:25:00] something that’s just day in, day out? Just part of the conversation when you’re out on the practice.

Brent Tipton: [00:25:07] That’s a really great question and I know coaches are going to be different from what I may say, or they may be the same, but I don’t believe in giving players a whole bunch of information written on a piece of paper, whether that’s team roles or like core values or terminology, because players really don’t care about that sheet of paper.

We care about those pieces of paper more as more, I would say. To show how much we know or to show how much we’re prepared, but how we have a shared vocabulary comes into our, our off-court sessions. So if we are in a film session, 15 minutes before practice, and we’re going to talk about the concept, we’re going to introduce this terminology or the shared vocabulary while we’re looking through their practice film from the previous couple of practices, or if we’re [00:26:00] looking at looking at game film.

So let’s just go back to that example of the ball screen, or a screener said set in a a ball screen, whether that’s a a conceptual offense or just a trigger. If our, our shared vocabulary for a ball string that’s against a hard hedge is a touch and go screen. And so I’m not going to put on a piece of paper, a touch and go screen.

Screen set versus hard coverage. Hard, hard has defensive coverage where the screener is going to quickly get contact time on the floor, touch the floor, and then get out and exit the screen. I’m not going to say that, but in our film session, in, in, in a film break down that we may WhatsApp it to our group chat.

It will have four or five clips of what a touching a touch and go screen looks like. And then now we’re going to execute that such and go screen in that practice session. So now that shared vocabulary gets taught and breathed into our next practice session. [00:27:00] And then from there, hopefully Shared vocabulary goes into a long-term memory for our players.

That way they can access that long-term memory or that shared vocabulary or terminology later down the road, when we’re talking about touch and go screens. So I feel like that is more dynamic when we’re giving terminology to our players, because words on a paper mean nothing too neat. They mean nothing to a player who has no background knowledge of what a touch and go screen is, but they can revert back to what they saw on film or what they see on their phones.

If four or five clips are sent to the players on what a touch and go screen is, that’s how we share our vocabulary. And that’s how I believe that’s the best way to really, really, I guess, put, put the vocabulary into the player so that it really sticks to them. And then kind of going with that, I think that.

Something that I’ve had to make a shift from is instead of coaching, the way I want to coach, I have to coach in the way that [00:28:00] athletes learn and saw the biggest way athletes learn is not through a sheet of paper with all of my terms on it. But how they’re going to learn is through the visual, the visual cues of what they’re going to see on film and how a player is set in a touch and go screen how they’re exiting the screen based upon what the touch and go concept means.

And, and all the chunking of information that goes into those three words or that short descriptive cue. So kind of a long-winded answer to that, but I don’t believe in handed players, sheets of paper for terminology or vocabulary, I believe in and showing them through film and then breathing that terminology and vocabulary into them on the practice court.

Mike Klinzing: [00:28:44] It comes down to, they keep getting exposed to that vocabulary over and over again, through your practice sessions and through the drills and through the things that you’re doing.

And eventually that big, long soliloquy is condensed down to those three words. [00:29:00] And when they hear those three words or they hear those two words, or they hear that phrase, they immediately are able to process all the things that they’ve been taught in the past. So let’s go backwards a step, Brent, and that’s when you’re sharing those phrases with your players.

But initially, how do you come up with those two or three word phrases? What’s your process for looking at, let’s go with that ball screen. So you want the player to sprint into the ball street ball screen. So their defender is left behind, which leaves the defense with less options of how they can defend the pick and roll.

So when you’re thinking about that, you’re like, okay, here’s the concept that I want to teach? How do I put that into a two or three word phrase? That I can use in my practice sessions. It’s going to allow me to do what we just talked about, which is to take a big chunk of communication and shrink it down into a bite-sized morsel that the players can consume very, very quickly.

So what’s your process [00:30:00] for coming up with those short little phrases? How do you go about that? Some of them you’d probably steal from other coaches. Some of them you’ve probably come up with on your own, but what’s your process when you’re going through

Brent Tipton: [00:30:09] that? That’s great. And yeah, that’s the number one process.

Yeah. That’s that is the strain, I guess, of how you get, you find what other coaches are doing and what makes sense. And you don’t really deviate from that. But, I mean, I think that’s the easy way, but just something to think of. Player is going to make players are going to make better connections or they make connections better.

And they learn faster when they have words to define the concepts they are applying. So I believe that players are going to learn faster when language helps them connect what they’re learning. All of that, to say that when we have a name for a concept is going to increase the likelihood that players are going to remember it.

And when the phrase or when the descriptive cue is dynamic or it’s it completely [00:31:00] describes the concept. Then those phrases become sticky with the players. And you’ve seen some really trendy terms out there, but they become sticky with the players and then they make those connections. And they remember the, the chunk of information that you’re trying to apply to that concept.

So some of the concepts that you know, when, when you’re, when you’re thinking about a term or a content. Well, let’s just stick with the, the, the screener and the ball screen, but I don’t know why that’s coming to my, to the, I don’t know why I’m thinking about that specifically, but when, when, w let’s just say, when, when the screener is sprinting the screen, obviously we said we want them to arrive alone.

We want to teach where the screen or where we want the screener to set that screen. And so the phrase that I have stolen, that I didn’t even know who to give credit to this too, but we want to screen, we want to stream the, the on-ball defender his back pocket. So now when the screener is sprinting into the screen, he knows he needs to arrive.

[00:32:00] So he wants to come with that as a man, but now we’re giving him a geographical place on the on-ball defender to screen, which is the screeners bet pocket. Instead of telling them the angle of their or internal cues. Now we’re giving them an external cue. The external cue is I’m hunting for the on-ball defender, his back pocket.

That’s where I’m going to put my chest. Now with that. Now my, my, my creator coming off the pick and roll, or the boss stream. Now that is going to force the on-ball defender to go over the top of the screen. And now that just creates an advantage where the creator can get one-on-one with the screeners to sender.

And so that right there is kind of how we were going to use that term to give a descriptive cue, to teach a player, how to set his angle of the screen while he’s in a ball screen. And so. I don’t know if that answers your question, but now what we can say, if a player makes a mistake to where maybe they screen the, the upper [00:33:00] third of the on-ball defender and the on-ball defender goes out to the screen, but we want the on-ball defender to go over the screen.

And so instead of now telling the player, all these steps to set the correct angle of a ball strain, all we have to say is, Hey, you didn’t screen the back pocket. Now the player can go back to go back to long-term memory or go back to what has been previously taught with a chunk of information and know, oh man, I gotta, I gotta screen the back pocket.

And it just makes sense to the player.

Mike Klinzing: [00:33:28] And it makes it a lot easier to coach when you have those terms in place, because you’re not every time the action stops having to go into. A 500 word essay about the mistake or the success that a player just had. Instead you can just throw those phrases out there.

And everybody knows all the details that go along with those phrases. And it’s something that I always find for myself that if I’m not intentional about that, it’s really, really easy for [00:34:00] me to revert back to stopping play, and then going into some big, long diatribe about this or that or whatever, instead of remembering, Hey, I’ve got to be short and concise.

And to the point, we all know if we remember our time as players. And if we think about anybody who out there, who’s a teacher and a coach kids’ attention span for one of your five minute lectures is pretty short. You’re not, you’re not getting, you’re not getting anywhere near all of their attention for whatever length of time that you’re going to be pontificating about whatever it is.

Whereas if you’re just going to share those short phrases, it just makes it as you. You got to look at how kids and how players are actually learning, and that’s where you have to meet them. And by coming up with these words and phrases, I think that gives you something powerful that you can share with players to again, help them to learn the game and become better decision-makers which is kind of how this conversation started is how can we help players to be more creative?

How can we help them to [00:35:00] better understand and have a better feel for the game? And the answer is, is that they have to develop that with the help of a coach, but with the coach also giving them the freedom to be able to read the situation and make plays and do things differently than maybe again, the way that you were coached when you were a player or the way that I was coached when I was a player, let’s go backwards for a second to you playing for your father.

And talk a little bit about that dynamic, because I know we have a lot of coaches that are part of the audience that okay. Coaching their own kids in some way, shape or form, even if it’s only early, when they’re in second, third, fourth grade and they’re playing in the local recreation league. And then there are some people obviously who continue on and get an opportunity to coach their son or daughter as a high school player.

But what was that dynamic like for you? What do you remember about it?

Brent Tipton: [00:35:55] You know, that’s, I’ve never been asked that question before, so I may stumble on some of my [00:36:00] words cause I haven’t really forced dots on that one, but it’s a really good question. You know, my dad, he coached because there was a need for somebody to step in and really lead young men and he stepped up to that role.

The coach and my dad was very busy. He was an educator as well, so he’s a principal. And he was super busy, but one thing that he was always consistent on was. Commitment, not only to his job, but also, I mean, obviously the coaching, but he was always committed. He never called in sick. He, my dad is one of the hardest workers that I know to where you know, you just, when you think of your dad, you think of him as an invincible hero.

And those are some of the things that I look at my father and he was somebody that was faithful, committed and worked with an impeccable work ethic. And [00:37:00] so those are things I think is in my DNA because of the example that I saw from my dad. And I just, I guess I just say all that to say that that went into his coaching as well.

And he may have not been. Up to date on the latest X and O’s latest teaching methodologies and pedagogy. But he also had other priorities in life. And I think what’s relatable to what he, what he was as a coach to a lot of this is a lot of us either didn’t start off as professional coaches or we are doing other things with their time as opposed to coaching.

And so he was always there for our family. He was always there for my mother. You know, and I guess I’m kind of going off of non-basketball topic here, but when you look, when I look back to my, my middle school and high school years of playing basketball, you had that example to feed off of and to learn from, and for me, that brought tremendous security.

And so [00:38:00] kind of switching over to the basketball side of things you know, he was very He allowed players to do before before there was either, either terminology is to allowing players to, or teams to be player led. He allowed his teams and he allowed his players to be player leaders on on the teams.

And that’s really something that I learned from him was to, to create that environment where you’re, he’s an enable the captain to, to lead and players, to, to lead and have really a player led team. Really that first concept came from my dad.

Mike Klinzing: [00:38:36] Do you remember there being a clear separation between dad, the dad and dad, the coach, like, was there a clear line where okay.

In practice I’m functioning as your coach and then once. Get in the car or once we leave the school parking lot, now I’m taking off my coach hat and putting back on my dad hat. How do you remember that piece of it in terms of [00:39:00] you guys talking about the game or kind of shifting back and forth from player coach to father, son?

Brent Tipton: [00:39:06] That’s great. No, I never remember my dad being upset in practice. He was always even killed always, always in control of his emotions. And so on the court, that’s something that we experienced, but when you got in the car, of course, you’re going to have those questions of why are you making these decisions?

You know, he questioned my work ethic. He would definitely question my behavior if it was a poor attitude or a poor response to a referee, a poor response to a teammate and all those things were always addressed because to my dad. Your character and how you behaved really mattered more than how you performed.

And so I don’t know where he learned that from, but that was always having a positive attitude and being a positive player on the [00:40:00] court and the response to teammates and everything else going around or around you was always at the forefront of what my dad’s valued. And so kind of looking back on that that’s things that I value and it seems that you know, I guess that I learned from him and, and maybe that’s non you know, I didn’t really realize that those are who I had learned it from, but my dad definitely had this coaching hat on, but you know, at the end of the day he had put his parent hat on and he would love us, even though we may have maybe had seven or eight turnovers, but you know, it was, it’s still yeah, there was a clear, clear separation there and I’m definitely thankful.

To have my dad coach me, but I think he’s also proud. And he likes to hear of how I’m progressing in the coaching world and really hear my passion for coaching. And so I’m really thankful that my dad was able to coach me.

Mike Klinzing: [00:40:54] How much of your dad’s influence on you [00:41:00] affected your decision to go into coaching?

Was it something that you were conscious of  wow. I really liked what my dad did. I think that that would be fun to do. I think I would enjoy that. Or did you come to coaching in some other way? At what point did you start to think about coaching and then how much of your dad’s influence do you think had a factor in you becoming a coach?

Brent Tipton: [00:41:25] I never, so I talked to people, coaches, and you might have had this, the seed that was planted to coach from a young age. I did not have that. I was delusional going into college, I guess, going into my senior year, thinking that I was going to play professional in Europe. I had myself believing that I was not that good of a player.

I played at a division three school and sat the bench most of the time. So that kind of tells you where my athleticism was and where my skill was. So I never had that you’re so you’re, so

Mike Klinzing: [00:41:56] You’re like every other kid out there you’re like every single year, like every [00:42:00] single one of us who thinks that we are going to go play at much higher levels than we ever.

Brent Tipton: [00:42:04] Yeah. Yeah. And I think it, yeah, I mean that, but that’s what makes us a normal, like, that’s what makes me just like everybody else. And so. So when I decided to coach it was because the game of basketball was not taken from me as a player. But when I had moved to Guam, I played for a division three.

And I, when I first got to Guam in 2008, I just asked around, where is the best basketball being played on this island? Is that that’s where I want to hoop. So they directed me to one of our iconic gyms called the jungle, which is part of a school here on Guam. It’s a, it’s a pretty it’s not up to par gym, it was kind of run down at the time.

And I went there and I started playing and the love of the game came back as a player after I graduated college. And I played for the Guam national team, the senior [00:43:00] team for three, for three years. And so this wasn’t their, their like official national team, but it was more of like their practice team.

We would travel to different places of Asia and play in friendly tournaments that were not FIBA sanctioned, but I did that for three years. I tore my hamstring in 2012, two times in a matter of about eight months. And so that was kind of where I decided and got the reality check that I, I’m not going to play this game forever.

The game of basketball has an extremely short shelf life to where you re reach a certain age and you’re done playing competitively. And I think when I was, I think I was 25 at the time. That’s when the seed of coaching was planted in me by our former president of Guam basketball. And he gave me the opportunity to coach our under 17 and under 18 national team.

That’s when I discovered that coaching was something that I loved. And through that experience of coaching, that [00:44:00] first national team in 2012, That’s when I discovered that the reason why I love the basketball when I was in second grade was in fact because basketball and coaching, the game of basketball is my life calling.

And I tell everybody this and, and, and I believe that I was put on this earth to coach the game of basketball, but not necessarily the game of basketball, but to use the game of basketball, to be transformational in the relationships that I build with players. So I believe that coaching basketball is my life calling, but it goes further than that.

To where now I believe that I have an eternal calling and I believe that my eternal calling goes as goes to goes to my family, goes to my wife and it goes to my son. And so now coaching has kind of made a shift in my life to where that’s my second passion, but now my first passion is. Diving deep into building my [00:45:00] family and building really intentional relationships with my wife and my son.

So I know I kind of put a spin there on kind of that, that question, but I guess that would sum up when I, when I discovered that that was when I’d become coach.

Mike Klinzing: [00:45:16] All right. So I have two follow-up questions to that. The first one, maybe it’s a short answer. Maybe it’s a long answer. I don’t know. How did you get to Guam in the first place?

Brent Tipton: [00:45:30] So I went to school in Wisconsin. It’s negative 40 to negative 30 degrees in the summer and the winter time me and my. My girlfriend, which is now Katie, my wife, we were like, we have to go somewhere warm. So the only reason why I chose to go to Guam is because it’s a tropical island in the middle of the south Pacific.

That’s the only reason why, because I was cold in Wisconsin. So I guess that’s the short answer. But that’s why, that’s how we ended up on Guan. We, we Florida was too close. [00:46:00] So I guess a backstory that my wife had was on Guam in 2006 at a camp and she fell in love with it. So she had some previous experience with Guam and then that my senior year, my roommate was from Guam.

And so there was the connection of knowing people already on Guam. And that’s really how we got here.

Mike Klinzing: [00:46:19] So when you went there, did one, or both of you already have a job in place when you got there or did you just go there and try to figure it out?

Brent Tipton: [00:46:26] We both had a job. So my wife is an ESL teacher, English as a second language teacher.

And then I’m a phys ed major physical education major. And I was teaching PE at a school here on Guam. So being educators was what brought us out to Guam

Mike Klinzing: [00:46:45] Makes sense. All right, now I’m starting to put the whole picture together. So in your first experiences as a coach, and you start to realize that this is your [00:47:00] life’s calling, and you mentioned how important it is to develop those intentional relationships with your family.

I think one of the things that coaches always struggle with is how do I balance my dedication and love of the game of basketball? My love of coaching, my love of the players and my team. The love that I have for my family and the, and the time that they need me. It’s always a struggle to find that, no, I guess the word is balanced, but we all know that there are times during the, during your season where it’s not balanced at all, it can get really out of balance.

So how do you think about balancing your life as a coach with the commitment that you’ve made, obviously to your wife and to your son?

Brent Tipton: [00:47:45] That’s great. And I’m just gonna, I’m gonna give you something that I’ve, that resonates with me very deeply. And it’s a quote by Francis Chan. He says our greatest fear in life should not be the fear of failure, but [00:48:00] succeeding at things in life that don’t really matter.

And at the end of the day, coaching basketball and the game of basketball, doesn’t really matter if I have a failed marriage. If I lose impact on my son, whatever I do in the coaching profession is going to burn in fire. At the end of the day when I die, but what really matters is the impact that I have on succeeding in life and things that ultimately ultimately matter whether that’s, whether you believe in a higher power or not, but what ultimately matters in eternity and how I view that, that quote by Francis Chan is that my biggest fear is that when my son is 18 and 20 years old, that he, if I spend so much time trying to be transformational with the players that I’m coaching or being transformational with the coaching staff, that I’m trying to pour my heart [00:49:00] into, if I, if I’m more transformational with my players, but my attention to my wife and my son is put on the back burner because I’m going to ask myself the question, did I really succeed?

And so that phrase. Is one that, that’s how I try to gain balance with my work, with my coaching and then with my family, because at the end of the day, I don’t want to succeeding in coaching and, and possibly win championships or, or get to the highest level that I can possibly get, but then lose my, my family, lose my wife, lose my son, but I would much rather coach.

And this is no slam on anybody who coaches at this level, but I would rather coach an under 15 team in a city and in the world where nobody’s ever heard of, but go home and love my wife and love my son. And so [00:50:00] I guess in a roundabout way to answer your question, that’s how I try to balance my life.

Calling of coaching with highlight what I view as my eternal calling with building my relationship with my wife and being. Ever so present with my son. So I hope that is hope. That makes sense, but that’s really how I try to go about it.

Mike Klinzing: [00:50:23] It does make sense. What I hear you saying is that it’s really important for you to be intentional about thinking about how you spend your time.

So I think about coaches that have a three hour practice, then they’re in the coaches office for coaches meetings. Then they’re watching film. And so they maybe got into the office at five 30 in the morning and they’re leaving the office at 1130 or midnight. And they have a family at home that maybe they get to say hello to very, very infrequently.

And we know that it’s really, [00:51:00] really easy. It always feels like as a coach, there’s always more, you can do, especially today when we have so many tools at our disposal to be able to watch more film, to read more books, to look at. Video to connect with more coaches. I mean, there’s just so much stuff out there that we could be doing.

And I think the point that you’re making and that you shared with the quote just makes me think about the fact that we have to make sure on a daily basis that we’re prioritizing what is most important to us. And that’s not to say that coaching and working with players and being transformational is not important because it’s very, very important.

But yet, ultimately, as you said, that you can be a tremendous success as a coach, as a teacher or whatever, as a doctor, as a lawyer. But ultimately if you lose something with the people that you [00:52:00] love, it’s not a place that it’s not a place that you want to be. And I’ll give you one more example.

And I don’t know how, if you can relate to this, how old your son, Brent.

Brent Tipton: [00:52:08] He’s five.

Mike Klinzing: [00:52:11] He’s five. So you’re just getting to the point where he starting to do some stuff.

Brent Tipton: [00:52:14] Yeah, that’s right. He’s getting himself into trouble. That’s correct.

Mike Klinzing: [00:52:19] Nice. So I, one of the things it’s been really interesting and fun for me and challenging is dealing with my own kids who I have a daughter who’s a senior in high school.

I have a son who’s a sophomore in high school. And then I have another daughter who’s in sixth grade. And one of the things that’s always been really challenging for me is just like, there’s things that you learned from your dad in terms of work ethic and time that you put in. I feel like my dad taught me some of those same things and I was just a kid who was always working, try to get better at, I love basketball and none of my kids really have ever been wired that way.

And yet there’s a part of me that as a person. [00:53:00] You want to just be like, Hey, come on. Like, let’s go to the gym, let’s get some shots up. Let’s do this. And my kids all have liked basketball, but I wouldn’t say that any of them growing up loved it. Certainly not the way I did. And so it was really challenging for me as a parent to say, do I drag my daughter or my son to the gym when they don’t really want to go?

And they’re not necessarily showing any enthusiasm for it or do I present them with the opportunity to go if they want. And then if they decline, I have to be able to accept that. And that’s really, really, really hard to do as a parent to just accept the fact that they don’t love something the way that you loved it.

And so there was kind of this interesting parental almost experiment. Cause I know lots of people who are the opposite. There look, you’re going to the gym to shoot, or you’re going to the batting cages to hit baseballs, or you’re going out on the football field to catch passes, whether you want to or not, because this is what I want for you [00:54:00] rather than this is what you want for yourself.

So I backed off all my kids, my daughter, who’s a Sophos, a senior stopped playing as a freshman. Didn’t play anymore since she wasn’t having any fun. And she walked away and it was great for her. She made the right decision. My son is now a 10th grader. His light bulb is now suddenly starting to come on and I’m starting to see more of that love for the game that I had.

And it’s just been interesting for me to watch of, Hey, I stepped back and I didn’t want to be the guy. I didn’t want to be the parent. Kind of like what you were saying. I didn’t want to be the parent who succeeded in producing a good basketball player, but when my son was 26 years old, he looks back and says, man, my dad was a pain in the neck.

Drag me to the court all the time. I wanted to make sure that I had a relationship and yet it’s really, it’s really hard to do sometimes. And I think anybody who’s a parent can kind of relate to what I’m saying, but there’s two paths. You can kind of do the, [00:55:00] Hey, I’m going to force you to do this, or I’m going to present you opportunities to do this.

And it’s hard sometimes to go down that present opportunities and just kind of let them make their own decisions, especially when you see like your kid has some potential and you’d like to see them work at it a little bit more, but it’s just interesting. So my ultimate point is that to me, just like you described with your family, whatever success or accolades you can have as a coach or whatever success your kid has as an athlete, ultimately that pales in comparison to the relationships.

And that’s really, I think that’s what it’s all about. That’s what coaching is all about. That’s what being a family person is all about. I think that’s what I heard you saying. If I’m, if I’m correct.

Brent Tipton: [00:55:42] Yeah. I don’t know how to say this. I’ve never, and this is, these are thoughts that me and my wife had communicated through what I’m about to say, but I didn’t know really how to put it into words, but what if we’re placed on this earth as parents with a passion, [00:56:00] for something that ignites a passion in our children, or what if our life calling is in such way that maybe you were not fully fulfilled in our life calling, which is to say, let’s just say my, my goal is to get to the NBA as a coach, which it’s not, but let’s just say that that’s what my, I believe my life calling is, but I never reached that.

What if my life calling of being an under 15 coach is to somehow some way shape the life calling of my son. And the reason why I say that is because my son started swimming when he was, he was three years old and now he’s five he’s on a swim team. And he, my son can swim the length of an Olympic pool, sorry 25 meters, which has half of Olympic pool.

He can swim down and back he’s five years old. But I look at, I could have left Guam before my son was born, but we didn’t, but because I’m on Guam coaching right now, my son has developed this passion, [00:57:00] or I wouldn’t say passionate, but maybe a love of swimming. Whereas if you’re on an island, there’s water surrounding us and my son can go to the reefs.

He can, he free dives like 12, 13 feet deep. And these raves he’s five years old. What if I didn’t fulfill and, and, and, and dive in deep to my life calling because if I didn’t and I left Guam and I didn’t coach here, maybe my son wouldn’t have discovered his life calling her or his passion. And I know it’s a stretch to say that swimming is his life passion or, or life calling.

If we look, if we go back to pictures on his first day of school, when he was four years old what he wants to be when he grows up as a Navy seal, why do you want us to do that? I have no idea. Two weeks ago on his first day of school, what he wants to be is a Navy seal. That’s what we have written down.

You know what those first day of school pictures, but I, I wonder that maybe our life calling as parents is to ignite a passion and a life [00:58:00] calling in our children and being okay with it being different than what we perceive our children or our son or daughters should be doing, being okay with that. And supporting them.

And I know my son is five. I don’t have the experience and life experience to, to talk through, but just a thought when you were talking about your children that’s some of that me and my wife had talked through what, what is our son’s passion and what can we do to fuel that passion? And we actually, we pray for him to have a passion because I think if young adult is passionate about something, then I think that that’s going to shape their life choices to be positive, as opposed to life choices.

That could be negative because he’s motivated by something. So just, just something to echo based upon what you had, you had said.

Mike Klinzing: [00:58:49] Yeah, it makes total sense. I think ultimately our role as parents is to give our kids as wide of a breadth of experiences as we possibly can, and [00:59:00] then sort of get out of the way and let them decide what it is that they want to do now.

Your son will probably be similar to mine. And that he’ll probably get a little bit more exposure to basketball than the average kid, just because his parent is all he’s involved with the game of basketball. So we’ll probably get more exposure to the game, but we tried to give our kids lots of experiences with different things, different sports, musical instruments being out in nature, hiking, just doing all kinds of different things.

And I think ultimately that’s how you end up being the best parent that you can possibly be. And as I’ve said, many times, none of us really know what we’re doing. We’re all flying by the seat of our pants, trying to figure, try and try to figure it out on the run. So anybody who tells you as a parent, that they haven’t figured out?

I, I tend not to. Believe anything that anyone who says that anything that comes out of their mouth after they say that I tend not to believe it because we’re all just kind of trying to [01:00:00] figure it out as we go and do the best we can and his parents. So, all right. Let’s shift from being a good parent to be a good coach.

And one of the things, things that I think is interesting that you talked about a little bit earlier is, is the way that we train coaches. And I think that the, the model internationally for how we prepare and train coaches is different from the way that we typically train or don’t train coaches in the United States.

So I don’t know if that’s something that you feel comfortable shedding light on. Just talking a little bit about how. Internationally coaches are developed maybe differently than how they are here in the states.

Brent Tipton: [01:00:45] That’s a great point. I’m heavily influenced by basketball Australia. So I just got out of their basketball Australia, emerging coach initiative, which was their label for they said the [01:01:00] top 25 coaches, 35 and under, so their model is they believe that the best player development is coaches development.

And I believe that too. And I, and I feel like that how we’re going to develop players is ultimately dependent upon how I’m going to develop as a coach. I’m only going to speak from my experience. So I can’t label an American coach and their own development and how they teach players, but with basketball Australia and the model that they have for their coaches is that they are going to develop their coaches holistically.

The whole person from emotional behavioral to technical and tactical so that they are best equipped to prepare the player. And so with that, with that in mind an Australian coach cares very deeply about their personal development. So there are constant well going back to the [01:02:00] model, Australia has eight different states and they have at least two coach developer coach developer positions within the state.

And then they have at least two high performance coaches within the state. So the coach developer within the state is going to help educate to coaches and that’s their sole role to help educate to coaches. And then the high performance. Is going to be influenced by the coach developer, but then they’re going to impact the, the high performing athletes, whether that’s a hundred from the state or 500 from the state based upon the size that’s how they’re going to develop their, their style of play as a country.

My mind goes to what if the United States had taken this model and the same approach to, instead of having the skill development of their players be dependent upon. Individual trainers, but yet the state of Iowa, since we were just there, this summer had two [01:03:00] coach developers and two high performance coaches, and the coach developers were going into all the high schools to teach the game, to teach it holistically to the coaches.

And then you had to high-performance coaches go into the states and, and taking the best players from that state and then, and forming them underneath a style of play for the United States. I guess all of that to say is just different model international model. The country is going to develop coaches through coach education, through clinics licensed, licensed giving or making coaches have to go through a certain level of clinics to get a license, which in turn is going to produce a better knowledgeable player because the coach.

Is continually developing their, their, their technical tactical, their holistic development. That’s not to say American coaches aren’t doing that, but that’s the model that I have been influenced by with basketball Australia. So I [01:04:00] think that the, the best player development and skill development is coaches developing their develop or development and skill development through how they teach through their evidence-based research and then their delivery of how to teach skills, whether whatever coaching philosophy they may have, maybe it’s games based approach to coaching, but that’s really the model that basketball Australia takes.

And that’s the model that I firmly believe is not only working, but I think it is something that’s very impactful to coaches and players alike.

Mike Klinzing: [01:04:30] I think there’s no doubt that a better prepared coach, a better educated coach, a coach who has gone through training of some sort is going to be. Much better when you put them in front of a group of players.

And as you said, there are lots of different skills. We know that coaches need in order to be successful, you have to be good on the tech technical the tactical side. You have to be good at the relationship side. There’s [01:05:00] so many different aspects of coaching that you have to take into consideration when you’re thinking about what makes a good coach, and what’s going to have the most positive impact on their players.

When you think about your own development, obviously you’re going through and you’re working with Australia basketball, and you’re trying to utilize the, the resources that they have to enable yourself to continue to get better outside of that. When you’re just thinking about your own development as a coach, what are some of the, in other words, where do you go to become better when you want to educate yourself?

What are some of the things that you do to try to become a better coach, whether it’s just watching video, whether it’s reading books, whether it’s attending other coaches practices, what are some of your favorite things to do to improve and grow as a coach?

Brent Tipton: [01:05:55] That’s a, that’s a good question. I have been well, reading [01:06:00] is the number one thing that I try to do on a daily basis.

And lately it’s been watching a lot of films. So try, I try to watch during my lunch period or do my lunch break. I try to watch at least 30 minutes of film, but then when I’m watching that film, not only trying to understand why the coach is running a certain action, but why are they a Ryan at based upon the defensive coverage and then who the personnel is for why they’re writing it trying to figure those things out and then tried to figure out cues for.

Maybe it’s a player coming off of a, a pick and roll. And for instance, I’ll just give an example, try and try and come up with a terms. You watch Luka Doncic come off of a pick and roll it. Let’s just say he’s attacking drop coverage. You see the space in between him and the drug coverage, and you will look at how he attacks that space.

And then now I’m trying to think of how can I teach my player is how to come off a ball stream based on [01:07:00] how Luka does it. And so one of the phrases that I had come up with was a pocket. So in between LuKa and the defender and drop coverage, there is space. So we’ve labeled that as a pocket. And then within this pocket, usually you can make that pocket passage is a common term, but there’s also two other decisions with that, with that decision.

And that’s can I score, can I beat, can I beat the defender and one-on-one coverage? And get to the rim. Can I feed the roller, which would be a pocket pass or is that pocket decision going to be, can I fit somebody on the weak side and the weak side lift? So when I’m watching film, that’s what I’m trying to think of.

What, how can I place a term, a teaching cue to what this skill is within a concept so that I can teach my players. And then the last one is I’m trying to remember, I’m trying to remember the phrase, but I’ve been doing and the last, I would say 12 months, a lot more journaling and a lot more meditation.

So there is afraid of trying to remember it. [01:08:00] The faintest of pen is better than the sharpest of memory. I think that’s, I think that’s the, I think that’s the phrase fact check me. I don’t know if it’s the correct

Mike Klinzing: [01:08:09] way if that’s the exact wording, but, but it makes sense. I definitely the point you’re making definitely gets across.

Brent Tipton: [01:08:15] So I’ve been journaling a lot more. And writing down not only basketball thoughts, but just LifeLock’s well, based upon what I’m reading that day. And so I know that’s a long way to answer. I guess the three ways I learned is I tried to read as much material as I can. Basketball related, non non-basketball related watch a lot of film on teams.

I see cutting concepts and then trying to meditate and be mindful of what I’m doing throughout my day, and then writing those thoughts down. So I guess those are the three ways I’m trying to learn. How much time do

Mike Klinzing: [01:08:47] you dedicate to journaling and meditation? I’m just curious,

Brent Tipton: [01:08:50] 20 days a month. That’s what I tried to.

I try to get in 20 days a month and over the summer I think I got in maybe five [01:09:00] days the entire summer. So now that I’m back on Guam and I’m getting into a routine I’m getting back to where I’m doing it almost every single day. But trying to go back to I read the book of Essentialism by George McCowan and he just talks about when you’re journaling.

It doesn’t have to be. A page, like for instance, my, my journal is like, like a four by six four by six inch notebook. It’s really small. And I just try to fill a page a day. Some of it’s deep, some of it’s talking about my son. So if it’s talking about a mistake that I made with my wife, I’m being impatient it’s just thoughts that I feel like is something that I need to remember five years down the road, so that when I refer back to it, I can either see a victory in my life or see an area, a ton of my life, where I struggled and then see down through my journal where I got victory in my life through with whatever it was a, a thought struggle or even a behavioral struggle.

So those are things that I try to do. Well, I’m writing in my journal.

Mike Klinzing: [01:09:59] Essential [01:10:00] ism is sitting on my nightstand right now. It’s a great book. I just, I read it. I read it. I read it earlier this summer and there’s a lot of really good practical applications for coaches and for life. Those are the kinds of books that honestly.

I like the most that are not necessarily specific to my profession, but they’re just related to being a more effective human being. And then I think you can take those things and apply them in your own life. That’s a really, really good book. I can’t remember now exactly what the phrasing was, but I’m going to go back and think about it where he talked about.

You want to make sure you do at least this much of something, but not more than just to kind of give yourself a limited window. So like, let’s say, I want to make sure that I journal every day, but I don’t want it to become this thing where I’m writing for [01:11:00] 45 minutes. So it might be, I’m going to journal for at least a minute, but not more than 10 minutes.

And so you kind of set yourself into these parameters that are doable. And that’s what I found to be interesting. It’s a really good book for any coach out there, essential ism and the author. You remember the author? You’re better than me. The author

Brent Tipton: [01:11:21] is George McKweon.

Mike Klinzing: [01:11:23] Okay. George McKweon. There you go.

So I would recommend going out and pick it up that book coaches, it’s a really it is a really, really good book. All right. Tell us a little bit about what your new gig is going to be like there in Guam explained to us how you got that particular job, what it’s going to entail and what you’re looking forward to

Brent Tipton: [01:11:43] I’ll give you the cliff notes version.

There’s a lot of the stars aligned perfectly. So the cliff, the cliff note version on this one is I had been interviewing with basketball, different, different high performance jobs within basketball Australia for their different high performance programs in their states. [01:12:00] And I had interviewed, I’ve been interviewing since December and I’ve been very unsuccessful.

I’ve been in top three and two of them. I had never landed. What I feel like was my dream job in June. The first week of June, I had another interview with basketball Tasmania was actually successful. So my wife and I were in deep thought deep conversation on moving our family to the state of Tasmania.

Little did we know that we were both very, we didn’t have peace about it. And so we would tell each other this, because. Coaching into the environment that I would be w would have been in coaching in. And the position was my, my, my dream. And so it was a dream job for me. My wife knew that, so I didn’t give her any of my uncertainties because it was my dream job.

She didn’t give me any of her uncertainties because she knew it was my dream job. So we were both silent on those issues that didn’t come out later until we knew we were moving to [01:13:00] Germany. So that happened the first week of June, the second week of June, my wife interviewed for her dream job, which happened to be in Germany.

She had been applying for this job for five years. Got it. She came out to tell me that she had gotten this position and immediately my heart sank, but I knew that this particular job for her was, was her life, her life dream. And we had talked about this for the previous five years that if she got this job.

We would stop whatever we were doing and we would go, well, she got it. And I knew that first of all I was telling Jason before that I would never take a position of basketball now that would put my family in a position to not be successful at 15 to 20 years down the road with the job for my wife, it really puts her in a position to be successful.

It puts my son in a position to be successful in a, in a, in a great school. And so I gave up that opportunity that from my dream job, with basketball Tasmania, [01:14:00] So selfishly, I could say that dill out to allow my wife to have her job. And so I knew that because of that, I wouldn’t be coaching. I had no leads, but when we made the decision to move to Germany, I got on the phone.

I called three or four friends that I had within the FPCC. They connected me to somebody who connected me to somebody who connected me to somebody. And I finally got on the phone with Timo props of best Porsche basketball academy. And we’re just really just talking about a volunteer position. And so I had agreed to I’ll come in on a volunteer basis to do whatever they needed me to do, whether that’s cleaning toilets or whatever they need to be to do.

I wanted to be a part of their organization. And then over a period of time David McCray is the head coach for the under 19 for basketball academy team, which is, they play in the NBL and is a feeder into the MHP Ryzen BBL team. He, he had an opening for an assistant coach position. So in a roundabout [01:15:00] way, my wife got her dream.

Yes, I, I D I didn’t get my dream of, of what the role with basketball Tasmania, but little did I know of the importance and the opportunity that I will be able to have with the Porsche basketball academy and really. How they view of transformationally being a coach and holistically developing the whole person of an athlete student through the social side, behavioral side, obviously that second sack that completely aligns with my coaching philosophy.

And I start at the end of September and I am dying to get there. So I guess that’s the, the larger longer version of, I guess, moving to Germany, but really that happened so fast. And it’s bittersweet leaving Guam, but we’re also excited about the opportunities for our family.

Mike Klinzing: [01:15:50] Absolutely. You get an opportunity to spend another place internationally.

And as you said, your wife gets an opportunity to do to have a job. That is one that [01:16:00] she’s obviously always dreamed about having, and you’re going to get an opportunity to start a new chapter and a whole new part of the world and continue your, continue, your basketball Odyssey around the way. Before we wrap up, Brent, I want to ask you one final two-part question.

And the first part is when you look ahead over the next year, and obviously you’re not a hundred percent sure what it’s going to look like with your new job, but what do you think is your biggest challenge? Maybe even look out further. When you think about the totality of your entire basketball career, what’s your biggest challenge.

And then number two, when you think about what you get to do day in, day out as a basketball coach, as a father, as a husband, what brings you the greatest joy in what you do on a daily basis? So your biggest challenge and your biggest joy,

Brent Tipton: [01:16:49] Ask me the second part to the question after I explained the first part, cause I, I will I’ll forget, but absolutely I got it.

I think the, this is something that I’ve [01:17:00] been meditating nine the past couple of days and. When we’re leaving something is our whole adult life. We’ve never known anything other than Guam. We moved out here and we’re at 21. I’m 35 now. I don’t know anything other than Guam. When I look back at my time on Guam, there have been successes as a person there’s been failures as a person.

But the thing that I meditate in on is just a really quick quote. And the quote is this the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now. And so I looked back at the trees that I planted with my family, my wife, with coworkers, friends, 14 years ago. Now there’s some trees that are really, really deep and trees that are very strong with great roots that are healthy.

But then I looked back at some trees and they faltered. And so my [01:18:00] goal looking down my, my life in five to 10 years, Is, I don’t want to look at trees that I planted that have faltered. And so kind of what that means to me is the relationships that I have with my, obviously with my family, but those around me, that I can impact as a coworker, as a coach, as a, as a friend.

That’s what success is those relationships with other people, those strong trees that I planted will either survive the test of truth is gonna survive the test of time or they’re going to falter. So I don’t want to have those faulty trees that are dead. So it’s, now that I’ve realized that cause I’ve had a lot of reflection the last couple of weeks, knowing that I’m leaving Guam to a new environment since I may have had some success, but I’ve also had [01:19:00] failure is the best time to start building trees.

And planting deep trees with deep roots is now. And so I see that as a challenge for me that when I look back on this conversation, this podcast this journal entry that I’m looking at with this phrase of the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now. I want to look back and know that I fulfilled my goal of planting trees was to say 10 years 10 years ago or 10 years from now, but looking back 10 years ago, and I was successful in my relationships because I was, I wasn’t egotistical.

I wasn’t prideful. I wasn’t selfish. I was transformational. I was caring. I was positive. I didn’t gossip. I guess that’s the biggest thing that I want to look back 10 years from now. And knowing that I have strong trees. Because of the choices I made with my relationships. So I guess that’s the first part of [01:20:00] that, that first question.

The second part of the question, what gives me joy? The biggest joy, the biggest joy I think that I have right now is waking up my son every single morning to take him to school. And the reason why is because that to me is uninterrupted conversation time. And something that somebody said to me before my son was born.

He said that I’m going to become the conscious of my son. And so my son can develop his conscience. Meaning when my son’s five years old, he still doesn’t know what, what is right from wrong. But through my conversation with him and my poured my life into him, I can be his conscience until he can develop his conscience based upon the things that I whisper into his ear, how I modeled.

My relationship with my wife, our respect, my wife, I’m becoming his conscience [01:21:00] so that when he gets to a point in life to where he can make his own decisions, then he can hopefully make the right decisions because of the investment that I put into him of trying to be a good conscience to him through my life example.

So the reason why I say that is because I get to whisper things into his ear, the moment that he wakes up and then being able to take him to school. It’s, one-on-one time to where we’re having conversation about superheroes, but then we’re also having conversation about how he needs to be respectful and obedient to his teacher, and then how he needs to be the hardest working student in the classroom.

And so those are little bitty things that I believe that I can shape his character. Through being his conscience until he can develop his own conscience. And I want to be the number one source of impacting my son [01:22:00] now, so that when he is older, he can make those correct choices. And it goes back to the second part of the question, but brings me joy is having that time with my son every day, taking them to school and getting them ready for school.

So I hope that answers your question.

Mike Klinzing: [01:22:19] Well said. I think that’s a great way to wrap things up and it definitely summarizes what I know about you as a person and how much you care about your family, how much you care about coaching, how much you care about the people that you come in contact with before we wrap up Brent, I want to give you a chance to share how coaches can reach out to you.

Connect with you, whether that’s social media email, however you want to share. And then after you do that, I’ll jump back in and wrap things

Brent Tipton: [01:22:49] up. Sure. So my Twitter handle is @BrentETipton. My email is And then I had [01:23:00] just, I just had launched just a very small website with some content on it that I’ve, I’ve done over the, over the last couple of years.

And that is So you can find different things there about myself and things that I’ve done. And you know, I, I really appreciate collaboration with coaches because every time I get asked a question, I get exposed on a knowledge gap. And so it’s really a great way for me to learn from other coaches through collaboration and Mike, I just, I thank you for the opportunity to.

To share my heart, but also the game of basketball means a lot to us and it’s really impacted us in a transformational way. And it’s I really appreciate the conversation style that you brought to this, this podcast episode. And it’s really been, it’s impacted me and it’s really been a joy to be on.

So thank you for the opportunity.

Mike Klinzing: [01:23:55] Absolutely. Brent, thank you for the kind words. I think that anybody [01:24:00] who listened in with us tonight got a feel for the type of person, the type of coach that you are. And there was a lot of things that we pulled out here that I think coaches in our audience are going to benefit from.

And so as you’re thanking me, I turn around and thank you for being a part of, it really means a lot to me that you were willing to come on and share and be a part of it. Our Hoop Heads family that we’ve been building over the course of however many years have been doing this Jay three years, three and a half now, 3 hard to believe how long.

Jason Sunkle:  525 episodes in Mike.

Yeah. It’s hard to believe how long we, how long we’ve been at it a lot. We’ve been at it a long time, I guess is my point. So Brent, we can’t thank you enough for being a part of it tonight. Appreciate you. Appreciate your time. And to everyone out there. Thanks for listening. And we will catch you on our next episode.