In this week’s basketball coaching conversation, University of Toledo head coach Tod Kowalczyk joins the podcast. Kowalczyk will enter the 2018-19 campaign, his ninth at the helm of the Rockets, after guiding UT to a 23-11 record and a Mid-American Conference West Division title last season. Over the last five years, Kowalczyk has guided Toledo to a 104-63 (.623) win-loss mark over the last five seasons with the Rockets’ victory total during that span ranking third in the MAC.
Coach Oliver discusses the offensive concepts and philosophy that helped Toledo to set school records for three-point field goals (327) in a season and ranked 11th nationally with a 40.1 three-point field-goal percentage.
“The most important thing you can teach your players is how to space the floor.”
On spacing: “We coach it, preach it, teach it, emphasize it every day.”
“So, most of our concepts . . and automatics are not necessarily program driven but personnel driven.”
“Unskilled players can still help you win but they have to be cutters, screeners . . they’ve got to be offensive rebounders.”
“Right now we’re in the middle of camp . . a bunch of little kids here . . our drill sessions, I’m not ashamed to say it, at that level are all offense.”
“What I found was, because we had less hours and less days to practice . . we had to be more efficient. We had to teach more out of 5-on-5 situations.”
“The older you get, you’re going to see the value in scrimmaging and shooting . . we do scrimmage more and we try to shoot more because those things really, really matter.”
“We tell our players, our scouting reports are 10-point edges. If you want a 10-point edge, let’s buy into the scouting report.”
“I think maybe the greatest way for an assistant to learn the game, is to become a great scout. Be great at scouting opponents because you can learn so much from that.”
“Every year we have go-to plays. And those go-to plays . . some will remain consistent but most of them are different every year.”
“[In coaching] the power of emphasis is huge . . “
“We need to shoot more threes . . and how you do that is in transition and then have some really good spacing.”
“One thing I’ve tried to share is organ donation and the power of that. To me the most selfless act that anybody can do is to help somebody live by giving their organs or tissue after they pass . .”
Click below to listen in if you listen on:
1:00 – Introduction
2:10 – European Ball Screen Offense and Offensive Strategy in a Modern Game
5:00 – Better Spacing and Player Movement
10:00 – Automatics
12:00 – Cut Plays
14:30 – Teach Offensive Skill on Youth Level
16:30 – Being an Offensive Coach
17:00 – Offense and Defense in Practice Balance
18:00 – Teaching 5-on-5
20:00 – Tracking Shots in a Practice
21:30 – Volume Shooting
24:30 – Randomness and Unpredictability on Defense
25:40 – Analytics
27:10 – Counters
28:30 – Play Terminology
30:00 – Play Calling and Scouting
32:00 – Set Package of Set Plays
34:00 – Throwing Out Bad Plays
37:30 – Options on Game Plan
39:30 – Emphasizing Passing
41:20 – Shot Selection
44:40 – Benefits of Shooting Threes
46:00 – Stories about Organ Donation and Relation to Basketball
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