John Calipari Quotes

John Calipari quotes

You’re going to make mistakes, just play through them.

-John Calipari

As I became more secure, I liked that I could make my life about everyone but me.

-John Calipari

Institutions serve people, not the other way around.  So as a servant-leader, I measure my success by the success of those whom I’m serving.

-John Calipari

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…Surrender to our instruction.  Surrender to physical conditioning.

-John Calipari

You want to know what delusional is?  I’ve had to say to kids, ‘You’re listening to your barber instead of listening to us.’

-John Calipari

None of my players are as ready as they think they are for how we play at Kentucky – let alone ready for the pros – because they have rarely if ever been really pushed.

-John Calipari

Practice is where we work on our players’ weaknesses; games are where we show their strengths.

-John Calipari

The best players I’ve coached have a demeanor about them that never moves.  They have a calmness…Physiology-wise, rage and anger are related to fear.

-John Calipari

A player who is looking for excuses doesn’t want you to put the responsibility on him.  It robs him of his best self-justification.

-John Calipari

Even when we won, I wasn’t fully satisfied, which is how you’re supposed to coach.  You’re happy, but you ask for more.  You try to get up to the next level.

-John Calipari

Do you want to read about history or make history?

-John Calipari

When you bring in great players to play with other great players, there’s a multiplier effect, and they up better than they would have been individually.  They drive one another in practice.

-John Calipari

When players combine elite athleticism and great determination, you don’t worry too much about position.

-John Calipari

If you need someone to be Superman at the end to win games, you’re going to lost games.

-John Calipari

 Thinking about how you would try to beat your own team goes with the job of being a coach.

-John Calipari

If I’m forced to choose between talent and experience, I’m taking talent every time.  You can gain experience and you can add skills, but what’s sometimes called God-given talent is just that.

-John Calipari

I coach for the names on the backs of the jerseys – not just the front.  My players.

-John Calipari

Part of coaching is acting.  It’s true of any kind of leadership, whether you’re a CEO, an army general, or a father.  Part of the job is that you don’t reveal your own apprehensions.

-John Calipari

In almost all cases, their (the players) dream is to play in the NBA as soon as possible.  The more who achieve that goal, the more who want to come here.  That’s the way it works.  Success breeds more success.

-John Calipari

I had truly gone from the business of basketball to the business of helping families.

-John Calipari

 

 

During the season it’s about team.  From the moment our last game ends until the draft, it switches over to being about individual kids.

-John Calipari

You don’t know if you will win or lose until you do.  I don’t give up on kids.  I don’t give up on teams.  I don’t give up on seasons.

-John Calipari

Just because you’re a year older doesn’t automatically make you a year better.

-John Calipari

Competition gets you out of bed in the morning.  It makes you alive and it makes you better.  It reveals the best and the worst in us.  You learn whether you can stand up and respond to being challenged, or whether you back down.  When you start getting beaten, you either change or you fail.

-John Calipari

Nothing in my Players First philosophy says that I should protect kids from competition.  It’s just the opposite.  I serve them by giving them competition.

-John Calipari

Recruiting is sales.  It’s persuasion.  But a salesman who’s a fake isn’t a very good salesman – or at least he’s not good at selling to intelligent people.

-John Calipari

My players have to have the intellect to absorb coaching and the emotional intelligence to be good teammates.

-John Calipari

Honesty and its related quality, trust, are at the very core of my coaching philosophy.

-John Calipari

The quality I’m looking for in a kid is respect.

-John Calipari

I need people who look at adversity as a challenge and failure as a learning opportunity.

-John Calipari

Classroom smarts and academic achievement relate to what we often call basketball IQ. I always want a kid who’s a good student.

-John Calipari

The one thing no one on my staff can do is add stuff to my plate…If you’re piling more things on, I may have to let you go.

-John Calipari

If you’re a coach who truly respect the profession, you have to allow yourself to be coached.

-John Calipari

I’m a collector of coaches, teachers, and mentors.  The ones from my younger days I keep in contact with and never let go.  And as I get older, I keep finding new ones.

-John Calipari

You must love the thought of pushing through your comfort level.

-John Calipari

 

 

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