Cronin and Stein Clinic Notes

Cronin and Stein Clinic Notes by Steve Smiley

This article was originally featured on

I had the opportunity to take in a few clinics at the convention over Final 4 weekend recently in Dallas. Two of the best were Mick Cronin’s on Defense, and Alan Stein’s on Player Development. Here are some of my notes from those clinics:

Mick Cronic Clinic:


–          Do your best job at the job you have… stop worrying about others


–          Huge emphasis on guarding the ball (more so than on the help)


–          You must guard differently earlier in the clock than late


–          No lay-ups, FT’s, rhythm 3’s from opponent’s best shooters


–          Stop layup and stop the foul (no reach / chop down) – get him to contort his body


–          Put players in a disadvantage


–          ***Show film of 1. Proper way 2. Incorrect Way 3. Their current reality


–          Big guys = never foul below the shoulders! **Wall-up


–          Show players film after every game of every bad foul (there are usually around 6 per game) – just get rid of the bad fouls! Keeps the players in the game, and don’t give away easy points


–          3 things Cincy did to go from a losing team to a winning team


o   FT’s – make more, give up less


o   Fouls


o   Turnovers


o   ****It wasn’t FG%, 3’s, etc. Those stayed consistent during losing and winning.


–          Mismatch doesn’t beat you, but the open shot will!


–          Jeff Van Gundy à “No shooting turnovers!”


Alan Stein Clinic


–          Basketball is a game of more than running & jumping… BALANCE is the key


o   It is played at a fast pace, but it is not a spped game. More about reaction, stop & go, etc.


–          “Perceived Relevance” – Players have to believe it will help them when the lights come in. If they don’t believe, they won’t try as hard.


–          Use a ball in all dynamic warm-up drills. Anything you can do forward, make them also do backward.


–          Build players “brick by brick”


–          View the warm-up as a mini-workout


–          How much quality work can we get in this 10 minutes?


o   Examples = Euro’s, lay-ups, hop-backs, lunges, 1-2 into the shot


–          6 movements of basketball à what are they?


–          Basketball is all about Starts & Stops


–          The butt is the strongest muscle for a basketball player


–          Goal is to take things from the Conscious to the Unconscious (don’t even think about it, just naturally do it) à is done by repetition in the offseason


–          Dribble Tag (4 or 5 man groups) à Tag everybody in a 30 second split (great conditioner)


o   Better than running sprints (cutting, starts, stops)


o   Is more FUN


o   Used at Dematha


–          Only thing that limits you is your own imagination and creativity!


–          Drills =


o   Why?


o   How?


o   Does it fit into your coaching philosophy?


o   ***If you don’t believe in it, you can’t sell it! Your players will know


–          Find ways to make everything competitive


–          Either reward winners or consequences for losers (as a coach, you decide based on your personality)


–          Partner circles idea (half-court, etc) – work on jumper footwork, back-cut, etc


o   Sprint, D-slide, Face front entire time (different feet)


o   Can always add a live dribble


o   12 second tag with no ball (around the circle)


–          Two things that are a dying breed in youth basketball today


o   Shooters


o   Leaders


–          Stress “player engagement” when not in a drill


–          Training = put players in a severe disadvantage!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s