by guest blogger, Steve Pancoski, Varsity Boys’ Basketball head coach

Being a high school basketball player is a unique experience.  We are so proud to offer a basketball program for Academy student-athletes, and it has been my pleasure to coach here for more than 20 years.  I believe in the narrative below, which is attributed to a basketball coach in Indiana, and although it is written from the male perspective, it is equally applicable to all those who love basketball.

A basketball player can come in any size, shape, or color. There is no common denominator except a love for the game and a desire to get the most out of his abilities. He is not only proud of his strengths, but understands his weaknesses. He is concerned first with the good of his team and knows that individual recognition will come through team excellence.

A basketball player has the enthusiasm of an evangelist, the discipline of a monk; the heart of a warrior; and never loses the honesty and character of a small boy.

He appreciates the support of thousands of fans, but he is much more aware of the example he is setting for some small boy watching from the sideline. He is happy when he scores a basket but never forgets that a teammate threw him the ball. While he never lets up at either end of the floor, the other team is not his real opponent; it is the full extent of his own potential that he is always playing against. He lets the referees, with occasional assistance from his coach, do the officiating.

A basketball player is made and not born. He is constantly striving to reach his potential knowing that he will bypass other players who cannot withstand the strain of this quest for excellence. He realizes that the challenges and competition of today’s game will better prepare him for tomorrow’s world. He knows that the true measure of his performance is not recorded in wins and losses but in how much of himself he has given to the game.

A basketball player never realizes when the odds are stacked against him. He is what a small boy wants to become and what an old man can remember with great pride that he once was.