NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Long before he worked for both Don Meyer and Pat Summitt Lipscomb women’s basketball coach Greg Brown was a note taker.
He would often watch basketball games on television and write down his impressions in a notebook. He would go on to work for two coaches known for their love of notebooks.
With stacks of notebooks filling shelves in his house Brown decided to put the best advice from Meyer and Summitt in a book, “The Best Things I’ve Seen In Coaching: A Collection of Notes, Thoughts and Observations of Pat Summitt and Don Meyer.”
“I had the unique opportunity to be one of the few people, maybe the only person, to work with two of the winningest coaches ever on the men’s and women’s side,” Brown said.
The 90-page book is, fittingly, a large notebook-size paperback.
“For several years I had been trying to work all those notes down into something manageable where you could retrieve, review and share them,” Brown said. “Especially after coming here I wanted a means to be able to convey and go back over information and share it with my team. That is how the project started.”
This is not a book about the X’s and O’s of the game of basketball. It is an insight into how each of these coaches guided and motivated their teams providing life lessons to be used on the court as well as out in the real world.
Summit’s “Definite Dozen” and the team attitude philosophy and spiritual emphasis of Meyer can all be found in these pages.
“There is nothing earth-shattering in there, but maybe one of the notes will stick with you or be good for your team to hear,” Brown said. “It probably took about a year for me to narrow it all down. None of it deals with me, except putting the notes in order.
“Coach Meyer always said the teacher appears when the pupil is ready. I didn’t understand that at first but I have seen that a lot as a coach. The notebooks were always sort of a journal. But it was not about what you did on a certain day, but what did you learn that day.”
The book’s layout draws from the “Cornell Note Taking” system favored by Meyer.
“That system divides a page into two sections,” Brown said. “One is two-thirds the size of the page and that space is used to take notes. The remaining one-third is used to summarize key thoughts, make notes of actions to take or make notes of new thoughts.
“The Cornell System gives people who read the book the opportunity to write down their own thoughts, or make up their own to share. It gives you an opportunity to make a “thought pad” of your own.”
Proceeds from the sale of the book will be divided in three ways with the Meyer Foundation, the Summitt Foundation to find a cure for Alzheimer’s disease and the Lady Bisons basketball team each getting a share.
“This is a great opportunity to raise awareness and to raise money,” Brown said. “The bulk of it is going to the two foundations.”
The book is priced at $20 if purchased at Allen Arena. Mail orders are $25 and can be sent to Brown at Lipscomb University, One University Park Drive, Nashville, TN 37204. It will also be available soon for purchase through the web.