I frequently say that I coach the players and not the parents, and have found it offensive when coaches spend inordinate amounts of time formulating rules to address parental interactions and behavior. A vibe of communist paranoia descends over the team, and I think the coach makes himself look like a dictatorial duechebag (wes I beat you to it).
Notwithstanding the above, I think selection of a team mother is vital, and here is some of the criteria I look for. The team mother must be the parent of a core player. The player’s role is known and consistent. The player is fully invested in your team, and it’s much easier for the mother to remain so as well. The team mother should on the whole be more likeable than me. I am in charge of developing players and winning games. The task of collecting money or sacrificing several hour’s of one’s life to work the concession stand or car pooling is far less appealing and services will be rendered more easily to a likeable person. The team mother must be high energy and organized. In this sense the team mother typically selects herself, by unavoidably being drawn into helping out from their very nature. Finally and perhaps most importantly, the team mother cannot flinch at my sense of humor.
Here are some of the best and a few stories:
Linda Downing at Winter Park – quintessential team mother material. During our two year association, my kids were still pretty young and Linda would often watch and entertain them during games including when I unexpectedly ended up with all three of my kids at the state final game in 2006. I quick call to Linda and all three were in the arena and safely seated in the crowd and I was free to coach and lose the state final.
Heidi Smith – When I got the JV job at Oviedo, Heidi immediately introduced herself and said she will handle “all the mom shit”. So comprehensive was her control of this situation that four years later I still don’t know what she did. Heidi has continued to be a friend, and came to our scrimmage last friday night and sat next to me on the bench in the middle of a clipboard smashing tirade, while assuring the assembled gallery that “she was used to it and not to worry.”
Terri Koepsell – Makes a mean baked ziti, and took the picture which sits in the header of this blog. Great story behind the photo. Me, Mr Charm and her son and our best player Hunter are pictured. We were up 20 on Lake Mary in the 4th quarter, and Hunter asks to go in and shoot a half court shot.
“Hell no”, I said.
He responded, “coach it would make me happy.”
“If you wanna be happy, go find some pussy and stop worrying about half court shots”…
CLICK (moment captured).
A week later Terri races up to me talking about this great picture she has of Me, Mr. Charm and Hunter, all laughing. It’s our theme photo, and she knows the whole story behind it. She gets my sense of humor.
My current team mom is showing signs of promise. Ingrid Ortiz fits the profile, brings laughter, was instrumental in setting up this blog and bakes amazing brownies. Check out her baking blog at baseballbakingandbooks.blogspot.com