Coach Fired for Negative Culture

Wow, seems like a guy who is doing it really, really right and has dedicated almost 40 years of his life to doing so.  And yet... this excerpt sums it up...

It seems as though some coaches credibility has been thrown to the wind and all that matters is the opinion of a few disgruntled parties involved.

"High school baseball is one of the last institutions where student-athletes can learn accountability, selflessness, and be given an honest, real-world approach to where they stand in a team sport. These ideals apparently don't matter to some parents anymore. They only seem to care about whether their son's name is penciled in to the lineup or not." 

Alderson said the culture to coach today is tough because of how parents can dictate a coach's fate.

"It's a bad message to let parents know that you're in control at the end of the day," 

That story is disgusting.  Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for a few parents (who know nothing about baseball) to get a good coach run off.  I have seen it myself at a school that one of my son's attended.  In each case the motivation of the parents seems to be the same - they want to see their son on the field whether he deserves to be there or not. This is why I have been vocal in past posts about not keeping a lot of seniors that aren't good enough to play.  Those kids (parents) are always the ones that create the problems. I get all the benefits for seniors that are good kids and I don't want to recreate that discussion here, but that is the risk you take.  School administrations are so afraid of lawsuits that they back down instead of standing up for their coaches (employees).  And at what point do we (as a society) stop catering to millennials and make them conform to the ways of the world?

This just happened at my son's high school.  He really liked the coach.  Some of the parents were concerned about him yelling at players.  Was he alittle rough -yes.  Was he a good coach - from what I saw he was striving to get the best out of the boys.  I was diapointed when I heard he was fired.

I had a parent get into my face the last game and basically threaten my job, very close to a physical threat too considering how aggressive and condescending his tone of voice was over his son not starting the game (despite getting some playing time in over half of the games so far and averaging 2 errors/game).  I thought I was being a too kind to a kid who has no business playing baseball but wanted to learn the game and enjoy some time with friends.  KId's a freshman, never touched a baseball before this year, is not an athlete at all, but the previous coach didn't cut him so when I took over I didn't think it was right to start making cuts mid season.  I think I'll fire myself after the end of this season, if I don't get shot before then at least.  

Sadly, I’ve seen good coaches and good people get this treatment and bad coaches and bad eggs allowed to stay. 

Coaches have an incredible opportunity to influence the lives of young people.  It’s a missed chance at best or a train wreck at worst when they don’t or when we won’t let them.

I’ve got a college son with a screaming and losing college coach. Constantly blaming the players, swearing, throwing chairs and helmets and trash cans. Lashing out at players who ask for a practice off to finish school work. It’s become pathetic. My son is afraid to make a peep...and he’s tuning this guy out and thinking of quitting baseball. 

My other son has a college coach who really cares. They’re losing this year, but the coach is first class in victory or defeat.   He understands his role can be enormously powerful in the lives of his players and he treats that responsibility with great respect. 

hsbaseball101 posted:

I had a parent get into my face the last game and basically threaten my job, very close to a physical threat too considering how aggressive and condescending his tone of voice was over his son not starting the game (despite getting some playing time in over half of the games so far and averaging 2 errors/game).  I thought I was being a too kind to a kid who has no business playing baseball but wanted to learn the game and enjoy some time with friends.  KId's a freshman, never touched a baseball before this year, is not an athlete at all, but the previous coach didn't cut him so when I took over I didn't think it was right to start making cuts mid season.  I think I'll fire myself after the end of this season, if I don't get shot before then at least.  

HSbaseball101...rather than fire yourself you could educate the parents up front next year.  My son's coach has a parent meeting and flat out tells us all he will NOT talk about "your kid with you".  He wants to talk to me fine.  you don't like that and you still want to talk to me, you can take it up with the AD, you still don't like that then we can have every available coach plus the AD plus the principle have a meeting with you about why your son isn't playing, but I'm telling you right now, that will not increase his chances."

We all kind of did the wide eyed expression thing while bobbing our heads up and down and had a collective..."mmm k" moment, but we knew up front.,..it was seriously in a power point presentation and handout.

I want to thank all the parents who have created a padded, protected, power puff path for their kids in life. I dealt with my kids using reality. It made them mentally tougher than the power puffs. They didn't have any trouble getting great jobs and succeeding. When they've been told they haven't done well enough they don’t sulk. They work harder and do better. 

Do parents of starting players ever make an effort to get coaches fired? My son’s high school coach got sick of parents, quit and bought a baseball academy so he could stay connected to the game. Two other coaches from the conference joined him. 

CaCO3Girl posted:
hsbaseball101 posted:

I had a parent get into my face the last game and basically threaten my job, very close to a physical threat too considering how aggressive and condescending his tone of voice was over his son not starting the game (despite getting some playing time in over half of the games so far and averaging 2 errors/game).  I thought I was being a too kind to a kid who has no business playing baseball but wanted to learn the game and enjoy some time with friends.  KId's a freshman, never touched a baseball before this year, is not an athlete at all, but the previous coach didn't cut him so when I took over I didn't think it was right to start making cuts mid season.  I think I'll fire myself after the end of this season, if I don't get shot before then at least.  

HSbaseball101...rather than fire yourself you could educate the parents up front next year.  My son's coach has a parent meeting and flat out tells us all he will NOT talk about "your kid with you".  He wants to talk to me fine.  you don't like that and you still want to talk to me, you can take it up with the AD, you still don't like that then we can have every available coach plus the AD plus the principle have a meeting with you about why your son isn't playing, but I'm telling you right now, that will not increase his chances."

We all kind of did the wide eyed expression thing while bobbing our heads up and down and had a collective..."mmm k" moment, but we knew up front.,..it was seriously in a power point presentation and handout.

Sadly, there are way too many admins who will not stand behind a coach that implements the kind of policy you described. 

Unreal....my kids' HS had this exact same thing happen with a girls basketball coach.  Very good coach (my daughter played for her for 2 years)...with a great record.  A group of parents basically ran her off because she "yelled too much".  Did she yell....yep, of course she did, but I never thought it was over the line.  My daughter was the quietest kid you'd ever meet....I asked her "is Coach XXXX mean or anything in practice?"  She said "nope, she yells a lot, but nobody cares...we all like her".   Unfortunately a group of parents, 2 that coached some of the girls in junior high and had absolutely no idea what they were doing, but won games because of a ridiculous amount of talent.....were the two that caused the most issues.  Heck, one of the biggest complainers was a local CYO coach whose daughter quit the team the next year when the new coach didn't have her starting (she started with the previous coach).  Small town comedy at it's best lol

The problem with these stories is there is not indication of what happened or what the culture was like.  There are basically no facts. 

With that said, I prefer a hard a$$ coach who knows the game.  The guys that enforce discipline and set high expectations are the guys that seem to win.  I can see parents, even some on here, that don't think it's appropriate for a coach to say "_______."  I look at them funny and say, well if the kids did their job they wouldn't have a problem.  Adults are very soft these days.  

Golfman25 posted:

The problem with these stories is there is not indication of what happened or what the culture was like.  There are basically no facts. 

With that said, I prefer a hard a$$ coach who knows the game.  The guys that enforce discipline and set high expectations are the guys that seem to win.  I can see parents, even some on here, that don't think it's appropriate for a coach to say "_______."  I look at them funny and say, well if the kids did their job they wouldn't have a problem.  Adults are very soft these days.  

Agreed -- the article does not give enough information - per Coach Kibler, he is not being renewed due to a negative culture.  Alderson, a coach at a different HS, makes a reference to parents, but that is not corroborated or supported much in the article.  I would not be surprised at all if it were a factor - perhaps even the determining factor - but we just don't know.

Not so sure about adults being soft now, though.  There are still a lot of tough and disciplinarian parents out there.  When I hear criticism of HS coaches in my area, it often relates more to culture/coaching ability/game management than things like yelling or enforcing discipline.  And those parents aren't running to the AD about it - they tell their kid to suck it up and do the best they can.  Anecdotal I know.  But I wonder if we have a problem with too many soft parents.  Personally I don't think so but its just my opinion.

One thing is for certain - as RPM noted, rarely are parents of "starters" complaining about anything LOL.

We all know that kid who thinks they are the best on the field, and they are usually middle of the pack.  But that kid doesn’t get that way on his own, his parents feed him that BS nightly.  It is usually those parents that have no idea why their kid isn’t starting and make sure the world knows.  

Sons school had a junior trying out that had this attitude the previous year...he didn’t make it. 

hsbaseball101 posted:

I had a parent get into my face the last game and basically threaten my job, very close to a physical threat too considering how aggressive and condescending his tone of voice was over his son not starting the game (despite getting some playing time in over half of the games so far and averaging 2 errors/game).  I thought I was being a too kind to a kid who has no business playing baseball but wanted to learn the game and enjoy some time with friends.  KId's a freshman, never touched a baseball before this year, is not an athlete at all, but the previous coach didn't cut him so when I took over I didn't think it was right to start making cuts mid season.  I think I'll fire myself after the end of this season, if I don't get shot before then at least.  

I have coached HS Sports for 31 years and have been the HC in 4 sports.  You need to go to your AD with this immediately.  Also, you need to request that this parent meet with you and the AD.  The AD needs to let this parent know what is at stake for attacking a coach.  I speak from extreme experience.  I've thrown down with 2 dads.  Both, as we found out later were on restraining orders and not supposed to be anywhere near their sons.  Both were dangerous.  I could tell you more but you would not believe it.  

Buckeye 2015 posted:

Unreal....my kids' HS had this exact same thing happen with a girls basketball coach.  Very good coach (my daughter played for her for 2 years)...with a great record.  A group of parents basically ran her off because she "yelled too much".  Did she yell....yep, of course she did, but I never thought it was over the line.  My daughter was the quietest kid you'd ever meet....I asked her "is Coach XXXX mean or anything in practice?"  She said "nope, she yells a lot, but nobody cares...we all like her".   Unfortunately a group of parents, 2 that coached some of the girls in junior high and had absolutely no idea what they were doing, but won games because of a ridiculous amount of talent.....were the two that caused the most issues.  Heck, one of the biggest complainers was a local CYO coach whose daughter quit the team the next year when the new coach didn't have her starting (she started with the previous coach).  Small town comedy at it's best lol

Well, you had to mention girl's basketball.  Ironic at best!  In fact, I have 6 games in the next 5 days and mentioned to my wife that I will not be home the rest of the week and her remark was that this was still better than when I coached basketball.  When I came to my present school, it was very controversial.  I asked the Superintendent to hire me since I left my other school 3 days before school stated.  It was a matter of honor.  The Superintendent couldn't believe I was serious.  I was!  He asked me to come back in one hour.  Long story short, I was hired as the baseball and girl's basketball coach,  In that hour they did some firing of coaches in losing programs.  The basketball team had won 3 games for 10 straight years.  We were fortunate and started winning.  I had great kids play.  We were averaging 24 wins a year and had beaten the largest school in the area 3 straight years to advance in the state tournament.  After that 3rd time, and after we were eliminated, I had a letter delivered to the school asking me to resign signed by several parents of my starters.  It seems I wanted to win a state tournament and they just wanted to have fun and keep in shape for soccer.   That year, I had missed so much at home and had forgotten to buy my daughter a Christmas present since I was scouting so much and coaching so much.  That decision was easy.  Within a few years they didn't win a game for 3 years.  Of course, they were probably having fun.  

Sometimes it is just politics and kids of rich influential parents not playing but coaches also need to adapt. We are not in the 60s anymore and it not anymore just winning that counts. Many HS players are minors and a coach shouldn't verbally abuse or scream at them. 

Winning is still important and sometimes you can't sugar coat everything and need to get a little louder but it isn't anymore that winning justifies about everything.

Social skills do get more important and being stubborn and saying " My dad got screamed at, I got screamed at and now I scream at you" isn't going to cut it, the my way or highway mentality isn't really the state of the art,you need to communicate carefully.

 

As has been mentioned, the article does a good job describing the good things the coach has done, but other than the "negative culture" comment, there is no details on what went wrong.  The article made it seem as if he did have a lot of parent support, so maybe there was something else going on.

As a parent and a coach, I have respect for "tough" coaches.  I don't have a lot of respect for "screamers".  I think there are many in the coaching ranks who don't realize there is a difference.

Tough coaches set standards and hold their players accountable for meeting them. They communicate what the player did wrong, and what the consequences are. Sometimes this is done with a raised voice for emphasis.

Screamers tend to seek out their players faults and use them as a launching pad for the tirade of the day. Their instruction is always reactive rather than preemptive. You develop a culture of players who are trying not to get yelled at and are afraid to make mistakes.

I want my kids playing for tough coaches, because that's how I want them to conduct themselves in life. 

The only thing he did wrong was grow old.  We don't have much info so it's hard to make any conclusions. Negative culture means old school. Times have changed, coaches need to make adjustments to today's youth or you are out of a job.

Sad but true.

TPM posted:

The only thing he did wrong was grow old.  We don't have much info so it's hard to make any conclusions. Negative culture means old school. Times have changed, coaches need to make adjustments to today's youth or you are out of a job.

Sad but true.

Quoted and, imo, true!!!

TPM posted:

The only thing he did wrong was grow old.  We don't have much info so it's hard to make any conclusions. Negative culture means old school. Times have changed, coaches need to make adjustments to today's youth or you are out of a job.

Sad but true.

If he's winning....and not mistreating kids then it's not his job to make adjustments....it's the kids.  He is there to coach baseball.  If he's doing that, making kids better, running a good program and winning games, then he's doing his job.  The crybaby parents can do what most crybaby parents do....take their kid somewhere that the grass is gonna be greener (then find out it isn't)

Buckeye 2015 posted:
TPM posted:

The only thing he did wrong was grow old.  We don't have much info so it's hard to make any conclusions. Negative culture means old school. Times have changed, coaches need to make adjustments to today's youth or you are out of a job.

Sad but true.

If he's winning....and not mistreating kids then it's not his job to make adjustments....it's the kids.  He is there to coach baseball.  If he's doing that, making kids better, running a good program and winning games, then he's doing his job.  The crybaby parents can do what most crybaby parents do....take their kid somewhere that the grass is gonna be greener (then find out it isn't)

I agree we don't have much info to go on, and personally I prefer the old school approach, but times do change.  When I started my career, smoking in conference rooms was common, beer at lunch on Friday's was common, and yelling at co-workers to resolve differences was common.  Not anymore.  Times change and the people that survive and thrive have to adapt.  This includes coaches too.

This coach took over a losing program eight years ago. In the past six years they’ve won their section five times with two state titles. She walked away due to interference from parents.

http://medford.wickedlocal.com...ree-coach-steps-down

Eventually there was negotiation. She negotiated “my way or the highway” and returned. She wasn’t going to have any trouble getting a job. The coach’s former high school and rival of this school had an opening. She returned on her terms. They won another state title. 

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