LUBBOCK, TX -- Texas Tech men’s basketball coach Tubby Smith was among seven nationally-known coaches touring the pentagon, engaging in a strategy seminar and holding a leadership discussion for 400 service members on Wednesday.
Smith told the group it’s easy to spot a leader within a group because, “They’re going to admit they made a mistake. They’re going to build their teammate up. They’re going to help others out.”
“You’ve got to identify that person,” Smith said.
Smith gave the example of a basketball player struggling to keep up while doing sprints in practice. He said a leader will go run with the struggling player and help him finish. Smith also said his family setting helped him to understand leadership.
“Growing up in a house with other 16 siblings you had chores; you had rules; you had regulations,” Smith said.
A written statement said Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey collaborated with the NBA, USA Basketball, the NCAA and others to organize the event.
Prior to the event General Dempsy said, “We’ll discuss the importance of dynamic leadership to building winning teams and also expose these coaches to what our world-class military team brings to the nation.”
The written statement said U.S. service members and athletes will serve side-by-side to address challenges and contribute to their local communities.
“These are two great institutions – American’s premier sports teams and our military – that are the best in the world at what they do,” Dempsey said.
The coaches are as follows:
- Geno Auriemma, head coach for the USA Basketball Women's National Team and University of Connecticut women's basketball;
- Jim Boeheim, assistant coach for the USA Basketball Men's National Team and head coach of Syracuse University men's basketball;
- Jamie Dixon, head coach of University of Pittsburgh men's basketball;
- Tom Izzo, head coach of Michigan State University men's basketball;
- Kevin Ollie, head coach of University of Connecticut men's basketball;
- Tubby Smith, head coach of Texas Tech University men's basketball;
- Jay Wright, head coach of Villanova University men's basketball.
ESPN's College Basketball Analyst, Jay Bilas moderated the panel discussion.