Daily Dad News
College Basketball Coach Dads Teaching Sons The Game They Love
February 1, 2012
For college basketball coaches Greg McDermott, Ernie Ziegler, Ray McCallum and Jim Les, the opportunity to pass on their knowledge of the game to their sons is a task they all have taken on joyously. All coaching in the high profile division I class, the scrutiny the basketball dads face in coaching and playing their sons has been unforgiving. However, it appears that the coaches aren’t showing favor to their progeny when their teams take to the hard wood.
McDermott, coach for Creighton University, coaches his son Doug, who also happens to be third in scoring nationally and leads the Missouri Valley Conference. Central Michigan coach Ernie Ziegler is drawing up plays for his son Trey, who leads the team in scoring. At the University of Detroit Mercy, Ray McCallum Jr. is flourishing under his dad’s careful tutelage. At UC Davis, Jim Les has placed his son Tyler into the sixth man role although his son is the second leading scoring on the squad.
In my mind, overall, our relationship is a lot stronger both as a father-son, coach-player, because we’ve got the two intertwined,” said Coach Les of the bond he shares with his son on the court. Greg and Doug McDermott, however, clashed early on but have found their stride. “That’s been better this year. It’s a period of adjustment for both of us. It’s gone as smooth as we could possibly hope,” shared Coach McDermott.
“I love my son, and it’s just about pushing him as a player, as his coach. But at the same time I want to help him make the next step to become a full-fledged adult,” said Coach Ziegler of how he approaches coaching his son. All of the dads chimed in on the privilege of playing both the role of father and coach to their sons, especially in the team-oriented sport of college basketball. However, Coach Ziegler succinctly captured the sentiment of all the dads in a simple quote.
“There’s nothing more fulfilling than when you’re doing something with somebody you love,” Ziegler said.
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