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Summer Coaches' School

Event Schedule

The following times may be adjusted slightly as the event approaches. The website will be kept up to date.

Day 1 - Thursday, June 28

MHSAA CAP 7 & 6 SCECH credits


8:30am - 9:45am - Session 1

Keynote Address – Tim Wakeham (MSU Strength & Conditioning)

Tim Wakeham will share examples of molding and shaping athlete behavior to maximize athlete motivation and focus. Wakeham’s experience as a strength and conditioning coach has given him experience with a range of athletes from different sports and backgrounds, which has honed his coaching style.

Getting the most from the Summer Coaches’ School – Dr. Andy Driska (MSU Kinesiology)

Dr. Driska will use the remainder of the hour to orient conference attendees to the learning experiences planned for the event.


9:45am - 10:00am



10:00am - 11:30am - Session 2

High-Leverage Leadership Behaviors, Part 1 (Dr. Jed Blanton, Univ. Tennessee & Dr. Scott Pierce, Illinois State Univ.)

Dr. Blanton and Dr. Pierce will share tried and true experiences for developing leadership potential of athletes. They will share the risk/reward of giving athletes responsibility, strategies for training athletes on their leadership potential, and ways to help athletes reflect and grow their leadership experiences.


11:30am - 12:30pm

Lunch (will be provided with registration fee)


12:30pm – 1:45pm - Session 3

Generation Z athletes – How they are different (and not different) and strategies for working with them

Dr. Dan Gould & Jennifer Nalepa (Michigan State University)

Dr. Gould will share strategies learned from experienced coaches for effectively working with Generation Z athletes (those born after 1996). While many characteristics of this generation can frustrate coaches, this generation also possesses a great deal of potential for achievement. Strategies for practice design and communication will be shared, and coaches will then develop their own custom strategies for working in their unique contexts.


1:45pm – 2:00pm:



2:00pm - 4:30pm - Session 4

High-Leverage Leadership Behaviors, Parts 2 & 3 (Dr. Blanton, Dr. Pierce)

In this session, participants will learn about leadership styles for coaches, and how those styles are linked to athlete behavior and performance. Participants will be guided in developing a leadership philosophy for their own team that includes plans for developing leadership potential in themselves, their coaching staff, and their athletes. There will be a 15-minute break in the midst of this session to be determined by presenters.


Day 2 - Friday, June 29

MHSAA CAP 8 & 6 SCECH Credits


8:30am - 9:45am – Session 5

Skill Acquisition, Part 1 (Dr. Andy Driska and Dr. Karl Erickson, Michigan State University)

In this session, participants will learn about the environmental and social principles that contribute to skill acquisition and talent development. The role of creative practice environments will be displayed for participants to critique and challenge. Participants will learn about motor skill acquisition principles and how these principles also challenge conventional wisdom about how people learn.


9:45am – 10:00am:



10:00am - 11:30am – Session 6

Skill Acquisition, Part 2 (Dr. Driska, Dr. Erickson)

Participants will learn a range of skill teaching strategies, including analogy learning, questioning, and implicit learning techniques, as well as the theory that guides when you should use an appropriate strategy. Then, participants will learn five criteria for a good practice activity and will be challenged to critique and share one of their own activities.


11:30am - 12:30pm

Lunch (will be provided with registration fee)


12:30pm - 2:00pm – Session 7

Communicating with athletes using the GROW model of questioning (Group 1 - Dr. Driska, Mary-Anne Reid; Group 2 - Dr. Gould, Dr. Erickson)

Participants will learn and practice the techniques of effective communication using the questioning strategy of the GROW model. This session challenges coaches to practice their listening and questioning skills, so that they can conduct more effective meetings with their athletes and staff, which helps to enhance buy-in and clarify goals.


2:00pm - 2:15pm



2:15pm - 3:15pm – Session 8

Goal-Setting for establishing a team vision, improving team coordination and cohesion, and improving performance (Group 1 - Dr. Pierce & Dr. Erickson; Group 2 – Dr. Blanton, Mary-Anne Reid)

Participants will learn about the principles of effective goals, what makes them work, and where goal-setting fails. They will then participate in a live goal-setting session using their own goals for their team or program.


3:45pm - 4:30pm – Session 9

Conference Closing – What are my next steps? (Dr. Driska, Mary-Anne Reid)

Participants will recap their major learning experiences, identify their most important next steps for action, and have an opportunity to ask remaining questions.