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March 21, 2022

Episode 31: Turning Kids Into Adults in a Loving Fashion | Tom & Steve Winiecki

Tom & Steve Winiecki are one of the most successful father-son coaching duo's in IL coaching history, combining for over 70 years, 330 victories, 23 playoff appearances, state & city championships. Tom Winiecki is synonymous with Gordon Tech High School (Chicago, IL) winning 193 games, including the '80 state championship; Steve Winiecki has been the head football coach at Deerfield High School (Deerfield, IL) the past 23 years, and will join his dad in the IHSFCA Hall of Fame this spring.

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My main takeaways:

  • Coaching comes down to relationships: coaches-players; players-players; head coach-assistant coaches
  • Kids want to be coached, to be loved, to be given structure
  • Today's generation is smart and want to know "why", and it's shows respect when coaches explain the reason behind the decision. 
    • If coaches can't explain the "why" then the coach needs to change his/her ways
  • Coaches have to relate to where kids are at in their lives (not the other way around)
  • Creating better people > winning games
  • The "troubled" kid is who needs us the most. Coaches need to be patient and build relationships with those kids to eradicate the unwanted behavior
  • When players make mistakes in practice and/or a game, coaches need to recognize that it's a teachable moment, not a moment to yell or lose control
  • Coaches need hugs, too. We need emotional hugs, physical hugs, and we need someone to remind us what our mission was when we entered the profession (CLICK TO TWEET)