The Basketball Podcast: EP269 with Jennie Baranczyk on Love, Pace, Assists and Motion

RELEASE DATE : 24/05/2023

In this week’s basketball coaching conversation, Oklahoma head coach Jennie Baranczyk joins the Basketball Podcast to share insights on love, pace, assists and motion.

The 11th-year head coach spent nine seasons at Drake before starting her Oklahoma tenure in 2021-22.

In Baranczyk’s first year at Oklahoma, she led one of the greatest turnarounds in the country, guiding the Sooners to a 25-9 record and into the second round of the NCAA Tournament. The 13-win improvement from the season before Baranczyk’s arrival was the second-largest turnaround in program history. She was named a Naismith National Coach of the Year semifinalist for her efforts.

Through two seasons, Jennie Baranczyk and her teams have earned two NCAA Tournament appearances, the most recent of which ended in the second round.

Prior to Oklahoma, Jennie won back-to-back MVC Coach of the Year awards after her team’s historic 2016-17 and 2017-18 campaigns, leading Drake to an 18-0 regular season conference record both years and winning both MVC Tournaments. She left Drake with a 192-96 record that includes six consecutive 20-win seasons and three appearances in the NCAA Tournament.

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Jennie Baranczyk Quotes:

“We want to make sure that our fans feel like a significant part of what we’re doing . . It’s about [the fans] having an active participation in what you’re doing . . We need to serve our community . . When we fully engage in that community and want to be the best for the community we can possibly be, then people tend to really get involved.”

“We do autographs after games. We do community service. We do what we call a three-minute drill. After every game, we go up in the stands and we thank people for coming.”

“I’m a pretty blue collar, roll-up-your-sleeves, dive-into-it kind of person. But what keeps you going every day is that love that you have for the people around you and for the game . . you find that love and that passion in your work, in your daily process, even when it gets hard, if you really love something, you keep going.”

“They [the players] don’t just find value on what it is that they bring. They also find value in the people around them as well, then they start to tend to play to each other’s strengths . . it’s hard to guard . . when all five people on the floor have the green light . . and when you get a team playing to each other’s strengths and they value their own and they value each other’s, it’s really amazing what can happen.”

“You have to have three people that are very consistent in order to win . . When there’s constant double teams all the time, that’s hard on everybody. And so, you’ve really got to be able to share that ball. You’re still going to be able to go to players that the ball needs to be in their hands. It’s going to find them. And the best part is when it’s not the coaches telling them to find them, it’s your team finding them.”

“You look at the best players in the world, whether they’re the highest level of WNBA or the NBA, and you look at those players and they don’t do one thing . . they also make the people around them better. So, their confidence doesn’t just come from the number of shot attempts they get . . It’s because they do multiple things while they play on both sides of the ball. They value everything.”

“Everyone should know how to post up. Everyone should know how to pass it to a post. Everyone should be able to shoot the ball. And we need to continue to be able to teach that there’s different techniques but everything’s also unique to yourself. So, I want to be able to continue to create an environment that is for everybody, everybody that wants to do multiple things but still wants to play team [basketball].”

“Giving them the freedom to be able to make those reads and make those decisions and try not to call it good or bad or right or wrong, but really kind of navigating through it. There’s still a discipline in it. In fact, there’s more accountability because the more freedom that you give them, the more autonomy you give them, the more that green light that you give them. Guess who has to own it? Because I can’t do it for you. I can’t make that decision that you’re going to get in the gym and you’re going to work.”

“You want to win every game you play . . but I don’t want to just be chasing that. I want them to really understand how to do that and it’s part of the process and it’s part of playing together . . it’s really good for chemistry. And I think chemistry wins games. I think a lot of times your chemistry is better than some strategy.”“Communication is on both sides of the ball. If you don’t say what you’re doing, then you’re going to hurt your teammate. If you’re not going to cut as hard as you can, if you’re just going to cut to cut, that takes away a layup from us. So, everybody that cuts has to cut to score. Everybody that screens, you’ve got to communicate what those reads are through that screen so that we’re not going to the same spot.”

“You really have to be able to understand your spacing, what you’re looking for. Everybody has to be a scoring threat . . So, we do a lot of that in practice as well. Sometimes we’ll do it where they have the whole floor, and sometimes we’ll do it where those three [players] have half the floor. And so you’ve got to get creative, and you’ve got to space really well when you only have half the floor.”

“When they [players] do cut, they’ve got to have two feet in the paint, so you can’t half cut . . a lot of it is cut as hard as you can. But also, you have to constantly see the basketball. We preach that so much on the defensive end. We don’t preach it enough on the offensive end . . If we can see the ball and we make that cut, you’re naturally going to know where to go and where you need to be.”

“You have to make a decision. If you make a decision, you’re not wrong. Maybe you could have made a better decision, but you’re not going to be wrong. The indecision, the gray areas, the turning in circles, that kind of stuff, is because we’re confused, because we’ve taken our eyes off the ball.”

“We talked about basketball intelligence. You also have to know some people are going to be able to handle things and some people aren’t. As coaches, that’s just our job to know that. And it’s our job to be able to be vulnerable and say sorry, and it’s our job to be able to explain. It’s our job to be able to build that one-on-one relationship with each person. But still, there have to be standards and we have to hold them to that.”

Jennie Baranczyk Breakdown:

1:00 – Introduction
3:00 – Engage The Fan Base
6:00 – Love Impact His Program
9:00 – Shot Selection
11:30 – Trusting Other Players
17:00 – Offensive Appraoch
22:00 – By Product
24:00 – Motion Type Offense
24:58 – 25:31 – IMM VIDEOS PODCAST AD SPRING 2023
29:30 – Variable Spacing
33:30 – Cutting
37:00 – Concept of Pause
39:00 – Ball Reversals
41:00 – Transition
43:00 – Dribble Push Type Defese
46:30 – Assistant Shot Rate
50:00 – Balancing Love

Jennie Baranczyk Selected Links from the Podcast:

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