SOURCE: Positive Coaching Alliance
Brad Murphy, Head Football Coach at West High School in Madison, Wisconsin, has won Positive Coaching Alliance’s coveted National Double-Goal Coach® Award presented by TeamSnap for his positive impact on youth sports.
Murphy is one of 25 national winners of the Double-Goal Coach Award, named for coaches who strive to win while also pursuing the more important goal of teaching life lessons through sports. The award includes a $1,000 prize and recognition within the website, newsletters and media campaigns of Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA), a national non-profit developing Better Athletes, Better People through character-building workshops for parents, coaches, athletes and administrators in youth and high school sports.
“Coach Murphy helps athletes win in and out of sports,” said Chris Moore, CEO of Positive Coaching Alliance. “By creating a positive, character-building youth sports experience and serving as a Double-Goal Coach, Brad helps youth develop into better athletes and better people.”
Despite the fact that West High School has an enrollment of over 2,000 students, it fields just over 30 players for the football team. With these small numbers, it’s increasingly important to make a connection with each and every player and Murphy does just that. That may mean stopping a play and asking a player what’s going on if something seems off, then taking the time to listen and turn their emotion into motivation for the next play, or it could be as simple as keeping peanut butter and jelly sandwiches in his office both because he knows that many may not have much at home and that the boys get hungry and stopping by for food will mean an opportunity to connect.
Andrea Dearlove, the parent of a player who nominated Murphy for the award, shared that, “Coach Murphy connects with each player and makes sure they know their importance to the team. What makes him stand out are his extra efforts to listen and to recognize the uniqueness of each individual on the team and what each individual needs to fill his personal emotional tank.” She continued, “since motivation is an individual trait, his efforts allow him to understand what obstacles might need to be worked through and what each player needs and wants to reach to achieve his desired potential on and off the field.”
One of the many attributes of a Double-Goal Coach, according to PCA, is that they take a mastery approach to sport rather than a scoreboard orientation, teaching athletes to put forward maximum effort, continuously learn and improve, and not let themselves be stopped by mistakes or fear of mistakes. Assistant Coach, Arturo Bonomie, said exactly that in a reference he provided for the nomination. “He has a relentless approach to making sure that each player is getting better every day. His passion for the sport lies not in the final score of every game, but rather by what we as coaches and what players learn through the process. He has an expectation of being the best version of you every day in practice, in meetings and in the classroom.”
The players on his team appreciate this approach rather than intense focus on the scoreboard and as a result give him their maximum effort. It has been a long, slow process to turn the program around from one focused on winning at all costs to building a program where boys learn to be positive,caring and driven young men who the school and community can be proud of. Efforts such as the Leadership Program Murphy created to bring mentors from the community in to speak to the team, accountability in the classroom and caring for your teammates have helped to turn West into a winning program and people are taking notice. Perhaps best stated by a player, “I asked him once why he coaches high-school football, because I believe he could coach in college, and he replied, “Because high school is when a kid is most impressionable and my goal is to help kids grow up and turn into successful, happy and responsible young men. To teach them how to work hard and gain grit that they can use for the rest of their lives.”
About Positive Coaching Alliance
Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA) develops BETTER ATHLETES, BETTER PEOPLE through resources for youth and high school sports coaches, parents, administrators and student-athletes. In addition to more than 1,800 free multimedia tips and tools at www.PCADevZone.org, PCA has partnered with roughly 3,500 schools and youth sports organizations nationwide to deliver more than 20,000 live group workshops, along with online courses and books by PCA Founder Jim Thompson that help those involved in youth and high school sports create a positive, character-building youth sports culture.
PCA resources, which have reached more than 8.6 million youth, strive to transform high school and youth sports into a Development Zone® culture, where the goal is to develop Better Athletes, Better People and the following become the prevailing models in youth and high school sports:
· The Double-Goal Coach®, who strives to win while also pursuing the more important goal of teaching life lessons through sports.
· The Second-Goal Parent®, who concentrates on life lessons, while letting coaches and athletes focus on competing.
· The Triple-Impact Competitor®, who strives to impact sport on three levels by improving oneself, teammates and the game as a whole.
PCA gains support from a National Advisory Board, including National Spokesperson and 11-time NBA Champion Coach Phil Jackson, and many other top coaches, athletes, organization leaders and academics who share PCA’s mission. PCA is proud to partner with the National Hockey League, National Basketball Association, Major League Baseball and over 35 professional teams across the United States.