Players First: Coaching from the Inside Out by John Calipari and Michael Sokolove:
The art of coaching at this level is about convincing great athletes to change. First we have to get them to accept what they’re not good at. My assistant coaches and I use the word “surrender.” Surrender to our instruction. Surrender to physical conditioning. If you’re delusional and see yourself one way while the rest of the world sees something else, let it go. Believe what we’re telling you.
Players arrive here from a culture in which they have played mostly for themselves. They’ve always had their eye on the next step up the ladder and the one above that. Lots of times they’ve been coddled by family members or by a coach or by people around them. Some of them come into college basketball believing that they have to get a certain number of minutes and shots. They’re entitled. They feel it’s owed to them.
I’ve won more than five hundred college games and coached thirty players who went on to play in the NBA. I coached in the league myself. I evaluated players and I drafted them. I know what happens in the predraft workouts and what’s on the psychological tests the NBA gives to players.
You want to know what delusional is? I’ve had to say to kids: “You’re listening to your barber instead of listening to me. Does that really make sense? When we play, you’re showing off what you want to show and not what they want to see. As a matter of fact, you’re showing them stuff that’s hurting you. I keep telling you that, but you still do it.”