This summer, I had the great privilege of being able to coach with the StickStar program based out of Texas. I helped coach the Dallas Select and Texas United teams and was able to attend the first-ever StickStar Combine that was held in Houston. Being a part of this organization gave me a different perspective on the game and ultimately helped me to become a better lacrosse player, and coach, in the end.
Anthony Crimmins has built something truly special at StickStar. His coaching style is unlike anything that I’ve seen before. He’s obviously a very talented lacrosse player but he also knows exactly how to inspire greatness out of the kids that he’s coaching, as well as how to get them to understand why they do what they do. Plus he’s just a really nice guy.
One of the biggest aspects of the game that he emphasizes is communication. I have started to run my own clinics and private lessons and I am coaching with the Plano West youth program in the fall, and already I have begun to implement the same theories and thought processes around communication, stick skills, field movement, and team play that Crimmins uses at StickStar into the way that I teach kids how to play lacrosse. I had never been one to think outside the box and try a different way of coaching or teaching something to a player, but now I find myself trying to tailor my approach to each individual player.
The biggest secret behind the success of this particular program is the culture that Anthony and his family have created within their club. The integration of social media and the Internet as a whole into their platform has made the entire club more accesible and more connected as a whole. The kids are involved in creating a specific mindset around the culture of winning and of having a good time while also looking good all at the same time. Crimmins gets to know the kids, makes sure that he plays to their strengths and improves on their weaknesses.
He’s been turned down and pushed away by some of the members of the lacrosse community in Texas because of the way that he does things, but I’ve seen first-hand the way that he coaches and runs his program, and it works. He knows the ins and outs of the recruiting processes and he helps kids through that, whether that means creating a highlight tape or talking to a specific coach, or just walking them through the steps required to get done what they need to get done. He almost never has something negative to say about anyone, and when there’s something negative that happens on the field, he rarely loses his temper. He’s always calm, cool, and collected and makes the right decisions to try and get a win out of any situation, whether it’s reflected in the score or not.
The lacrosse IQ that I’ve seen in some of the younger players in the StickStar program is astounding. Anthony Crimmins’ system is one that cultivates knowledge of the game and also brings the kids closer to each other by creating a unique and truly special culture. Crimmins is setting a precedent for the state of Texas by bringing the level of play up for both his players and for the entire state. Coaches and players alike should be on the lookout for StickStar teams in the future, because they might just surprise you.
#Precedent #KhakiCulture #Cookbook
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