UCLA’s Norm Chow Illustrates Great Coaching

UCLA Offensive Coordinator Norm Chow is known as an offensive guru, the coach who has tutored multiple Heisman Trophy winners and directed many high-powered offenses.

According to UCLA fullback Tobi Umodu’s article “What Makes Norm Chow Norm Chow” in the New York Times, Chow’s greatness goes beyond pure knowledge of offensive sets and throwing technique:

  • The main thing Coach Chow tries to teach us is attention to detail. He knows that if we do all the little things right everything else will take care of itself.
  • Another aspect of him he tries to pass on to us is his genuine passion for the game…He is always the most animated person out there during practice. It could be him trying to get us hyped up for practice, wanting us to put more effort into a play, or just being excited about how a play worked out. Whatever it is, his main goal is to try to get us to love the game as much as he does and to try and have fun while we are out there…he always says that we don’t work football, we play football.
  • What I admire the most about Coach Chow is how much he cares about the players he coaches. He is one of the coaches that you know has your back even if the problem you are having doesn’t have anything to do with football. Coaching is more than a 9-to-5 job to him. He loves being around us, joking with us, or just talking to us about being more than just a good football player, but also being a good man.

Three important things that any coach, regardless of knowledge, level of play or experience, can do:

  1. Attention to detail (process goals)
  2. Passion
  3. Caring about players as people, not just players.

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