Ultimate Team Chemistry Explained In Detail 0

(Editor’s Note: Ed Cheff, retired head coach at Lewis-Clark State, led the program to 16 NAIA national championships. This superb article explains how the complex area of team chemistry was achieved every single year.)

By ED CHEFF
Special To Collegiate Baseball

LEWISTON, Idaho. — Several years ago, I had the opportunity to watch Quincey Jones, one of the music industry’s all-time greats, receive a Grammy Music Legend Award.

A comment he made in his acceptance speech impressed me as very meaningful to the importance of team togetherness.

He stated that “great and exciting things occur in music when people involved truly believe in one another.”

I’m sure whether we are discussing music or medical research, aerospace travel or athletics “great and exciting things do occur when the people involved truly believe in one another.”

I think if we add “truly caring for one another” to “truly believing in one another” we have probably defined team chemistry.

There is no singular formula a coach can follow to ensure that a “caring and believing” relationship among his players and between the players and the coaching staff develops.

Coaches vary on their philosophical approaches to coaching and the circumstances and situations that dictate what they can and can’t do in terms of running their programs also vary.

My point is simply that coaches need to develop their own formula to develop a “caring and believing” atmosphere in their program by using the same planning, concern and constant evaluation that they devote to skill development and game strategy if the potential of the team is going to be realized.

At the beginning of each year the first team contact I have with my players is concerned with presenting our program’s formula for developing a “caring and believing” chemistry.

We discuss the fact that they only take this journey, participating in a collegiate baseball program, once in their lifetime and that they, along with the coaches, have the responsibility to make it one of the best and more rewarding experiences of their lives.

It is pointed out that we are going to do things as a team that really have little direct ties with baseball, but are activities that we believe will make us a better team.

We discuss each activity and the philosophy behind it. Activities include a camping trip to British Columbia, Canada over Labor Day Weekend, a firewood project where 125 cords were cut by players which netted the program over $10,000, a boxing smoker where all players were introduced to the basic skills of boxing that ended in the boxing smoker, community involvement, plus much more.

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