Case in point - Ami wTJ


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Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Marlow » Thu Jan 31, 2013 7:43 am

I'm perusing an article on the home-page here, and I read about a young girl named Keturah Orji who represents what I've been ranting about in the thread's subject area.

Last year as a sophomore (15/16 years old) she ran a 200 in 24.67 and a 400 in 56.71, both promising marks, but typical of a USA teen girl who is 'good'.

But . . . in her first year of jumping she went

LJ - 19' 7.5 (~6m)
TJ - 41' (~12.50)

That's her debut season with what I will call 'competent' coaching (which most of us HS coaches aspire to).

Catch #1 - she likes volleyball too
Catch #2 - she will continue to run 100s, 200s, 400s, and add in an occasional HJ.

12.50 in her first (young) year of the TJ. Is this not a girl that COULD become a viable force in the TJ? But she will (probably) be lost in the shuffle somewhere along the line. If she received the encouragement, support and patience she needs, could not she have a decent chance to become a 14m (46'), if not 15m (49') jumper? That would put her at the top of the Ami ranks and the latter number would make her truly world-class.

Just sayin' . . . sigh . . .
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Deerfoot » Thu Jan 31, 2013 2:11 pm

While I have almost no knowledge of the American High School athletics scene, could part of the problem be that the triple jump is not considered a 'cool' event?
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Marlow » Thu Jan 31, 2013 2:57 pm

Deerfoot wrote:While I have almost no knowledge of the American High School athletics scene, could part of the problem be that the triple jump is not considered a 'cool' event?

I had never heard that (at the HS level). The 100 and mile are where all the non-talented kids go, so there goes their coolness.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby lonewolf » Thu Jan 31, 2013 3:42 pm

The problem with the TJ in Oklahoma HS is that is so seldom contested it has no chance to be cool or uncool. No one is good at it. The rare competitions are more like experimental training and a pain to conduct. . the TJers are the LJers and also running the sprints, hurdles and sprint relays.
The TJ is more widely contested in Texas HS and a few genuine TJers show up at the Texas
Relays every year..dunno how you change the mindset.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Blues » Thu Jan 31, 2013 4:18 pm

Marlow wrote:I'm perusing an article on the home-page here, and I read about a young girl named Keturah Orji who represents what I've been ranting about in the thread's subject area.

Last year as a sophomore (15/16 years old) she ran a 200 in 24.67 and a 400 in 56.71, both promising marks, but typical of a USA teen girl who is 'good'.

But . . . in her first year of jumping she went

LJ - 19' 7.5 (~6m)
TJ - 41' (~12.50)

That's her debut season with what I will call 'competent' coaching (which most of us HS coaches aspire to).

Catch #1 - she likes volleyball too
Catch #2 - she will continue to run 100s, 200s, 400s, and add in an occasional HJ.



Just sayin' . . . sigh . . .


Catch #3 - she also has the option to represent Nigeria rather than the USA if the opportunity arises for her to compete internationally. (There's nothing that suggests she'd do that, but she has the choice.)
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Marlow » Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:07 pm

Blues wrote:
Marlow wrote:I'm perusing an article on the home-page here, and I read about a young girl named Keturah Orji who represents what I've been ranting about in the thread's subject area.
Last year as a sophomore (15/16 years old) she ran a 200 in 24.67 and a 400 in 56.71, both promising marks, but typical of a USA teen girl who is 'good'.
But . . . in her first year of jumping she went
LJ - 19' 7.5 (~6m)
TJ - 41' (~12.50)
That's her debut season with what I will call 'competent' coaching (which most of us HS coaches aspire to).
Catch #1 - she likes volleyball too
Catch #2 - she will continue to run 100s, 200s, 400s, and add in an occasional HJ.
Just sayin' . . . sigh . . .

Catch #3 - she also has the option to represent Nigeria rather than the USA if the opportunity arises for her to compete internationally. (There's nothing that suggests she'd do that, but she has the choice.)

Well, then I guess the good news is that we (USA) are so abysmally bad in this event, that she won't get scared off by the competition for a WC/OG berth when the time comes . . . sigh.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby unclezadok » Thu Jan 31, 2013 5:44 pm

Blues wrote:
Marlow wrote:I'm perusing an article on the home-page here, and I read about a young girl named Keturah Orji who represents what I've been ranting about in the thread's subject area.

Last year as a sophomore (15/16 years old) she ran a 200 in 24.67 and a 400 in 56.71, both promising marks, but typical of a USA teen girl who is 'good'.

But . . . in her first year of jumping she went

LJ - 19' 7.5 (~6m)
TJ - 41' (~12.50)

That's her debut season with what I will call 'competent' coaching (which most of us HS coaches aspire to).

Catch #1 - she likes volleyball too
Catch #2 - she will continue to run 100s, 200s, 400s, and add in an occasional HJ.



Just sayin' . . . sigh . . .


Catch #3 - she also has the option to represent Nigeria rather than the USA if the opportunity arises for her to compete internationally. (There's nothing that suggests she'd do that, but she has the choice.)


She'd probably have a better chance of making the US team than the Nigerian team.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby El Toro » Thu Jan 31, 2013 6:56 pm

Look on the bright side, Marlow, at least she is not white, otherwise she would be automatically moved up to middle distance.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Marlow » Sun Jun 16, 2013 4:41 am

Speaking of 'case in point'!

As Keturah Orji, the junior from Mount Olive, N.J., sped down the runway for her fifth triple jump of the day, what was in question was not if she'd repeat at the New Balance Nationals champion in Greensboro, N.C.
The question was simply, "How far can she go?"
Well, that jump — which measured a wind-legal 13.34 meters (43-9 1/4) — left more questions than answers. It was, after all, the sixth-longest effort in high school history, but it didn't have the look of a perfect effort.
She didn't even hit the takeoff board and her final phase — the jump — nearly had a 'run-through' look. Her entry into the sand was without extension as she landed standing upright and simply walked away.
How many inches were left at both the start and finish of the effort? That is rather scary to think about given that her mark would have scored at the NCAA Championships last weekend. And, yes, she is just a junior.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby batonless relay » Sun Jun 16, 2013 6:08 am

The problem with wTJ in America is coaching. And, one of the biggest problems is the type of "coach" waiting for the athletic Messiah - the type of athlete that could do "anything" nearly "NATURALLY". There are TONS of athletes WAITING to find a coach! The type of coach who isn't ONLY looking for an athlete of "West African descent" or who can run 11.50 in the 100m. They're looking for someone who actually KNOWS what he/she is doing and can take their untrained, untapped potential and mold it into something special; something the 99% just can't do.

There really is no "case in point" to this thread. How can US wTJ coaching, especially on the high school level, be called "competent"? We certainly wouldn't call it "expert", "great" or even "good" but even "competent" seems like a promotion. Why? Because "athletes" can jump 43/44' without "coaching". If you get even luckier one of those athletes MAY even get near 14m with wind, and that's the reason why only one of the top 10 high schoolers ever jumped beyond 14m at a later date. There are more surfaced tracks in the USA than in all the other countries on the earth combined; The USA has about 10,000 high school track programs; has 500,000 girls "participating" each year and has another 500+ "coaches" on the NCAA DI, DII, DIII JUCO and NAIA level and yet only ONE US Junior has ever jumped over 14m (14.01) and a girl jumps 44 feet and her coaching is described as "competent"?

Almost 6 months before her 17th birthday, Spaniard Ana Peleteiro jumped 14.17m, yet the best American junior ever is "only" 14.01 - and the American high school record is 13.74 - and those Juniors had up to 3 years more than Ana to do it? Ana was 16! She had a coach. A real coach that wasn't waiting for someone faster or stronger but who could teach her how to jump farther with discipline and knowledge. An 18 y/o Estonian jumped 14.43. She had a coach! In almost all of the wTJ junior athletes who are better than their American counterparts, those non-Americans trained with their coaches for a shorter period than the US-"trained" girls. So, let's get this straight: the American coaches are as good or better with MORE time and more access to athletes but lag the all-time charts because they're good?
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby gktrack » Sun Jun 16, 2013 8:48 am

... saw some young promise also in HS mTJ yesterday at New Balance Nationals...
How 'bout this series from Jeremiah Green from Tampa FL, HS #1:
F / 52-2 / F / 51-9.75 / 52-1.75 / 52-1.25, all legal, and most into a negative wind...

In case you were wondering, yes, he has speed... he's run a 10.64 100m
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Spickard » Sun Jun 16, 2013 1:02 pm

Marlow is correct. Geubelle ran 11.81 in high school, but she ran it BECAUSE of her very competent jump coaching, not in spite of it. She was a 12.4 kid prior, which, in Washington State might seem fast. But the right call was made and she triple jumped. She's not even a B standard kid yet, but you'd be hard pressed to find 10 like her who were guided to jump. Unfortunately, you could find 20 like her that played basketball, another 20 who played volleyball, and another 20 who played soccer....and I'm not talking about kids who "made it" in these sports. I'm talking about kids who became journeymen level performers in NCAA (with all apologies to Nick Symmonds. :twisted: )

The bottom line is that American coaching lacks in two places: having the vision to put speed on the runway and then developing an acceptable technical model.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Marlow » Sun Jun 16, 2013 6:00 pm

batonless relay wrote:There really is no "case in point" to this thread. How can US wTJ coaching, especially on the high school level, be called "competent"? We certainly wouldn't call it "expert", "great" or even "good" but even "competent" seems like a promotion.

Talk about over-generalizations. There are plenty of excellent HS TJ coaches, just as there are college ones. Unfortunately the problem is the likelihood of a great talent having a great coach is very small. Great TJ talent manifests itself in other events, so coaches 'let' then do many and they never settle in to be the next great TJer. I and another coach in this city take 13.5 g100m sprinters (often the best we have) and make them 35-37' TJers. No hubris, but give me an 11.7 sprinter (with some modicum of verts), let me train her in just the LJ/TJ (no sprints, no relays) and I'll give someone who can compete with the best. And I'm just a "good" coach, not a great one. When I go to USATF coaching courses, I meet men and women who could make world-class TJers, but they never have the crème de la crème to work with. Euro coaches can focus on one girl, one event, and that's where they make their champions.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby mal » Mon Jun 17, 2013 5:45 am

Marlow, there is so much available physical ability in the US, that criticism of coaching is warranted.

I find that a really good coach lifts all talent levels in their group. I wouldn't describe that as over achieving on the part of the 'lesser' talent.

Much high school coaching in this country is about the stipend and available time.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby batonless relay » Mon Jun 17, 2013 6:34 am

Marlow wrote:There are plenty of excellent HS TJ coaches, just as there are college ones. Unfortunately the problem is the likelihood of a great talent having a great coach is very small. Great TJ talent manifests itself in other events, so coaches 'let' then do many and they never settle in to be the next great TJer.
First, let's keep the conversation on WOMEN'S/GIRLS TRIPLE JUMP. Second, what do you define as "excellent"? Clearly your standard is lower than mine, but let's at least define what your standard is? Third, imo, that's nonsense that the US has "excellent" TJ coaches. 14.20 is the B-standard and the US doesn't have a single American who has the B, but your saying there are "excellent" coaches? In 20 years, not a single "excellent coach" has seen a TJ talent? That's impossible. If anything there waiting for someone to jump 15m so they can attach their name to them.

Marlow wrote:I and another coach in this city take 13.5 g100m sprinters (often the best we have) and make them 35-37' TJers. No hubris, but give me an 11.7 sprinter (with some modicum of verts), let me train her in just the LJ/TJ (no sprints, no relays) and I'll give someone who can compete with the best. And I'm just a "good" coach, not a great one.

No disrespect, Marlow, but that's horseshit! You can't do it, and neither can many (all?) of those "excellent" coaches that you claim can do it. If you're learning from the same books/methodology that they are and they're better than you...what makes you think you can? you don't need 11.7 speed to be a great triple jumper. It's certainly helpful, but not necessary.

Marlow wrote:When I go to USATF coaching courses, I meet men and women who could make world-class TJers, but they never have the crème de la crème to work with. Euro coaches can focus on one girl, one event, and that's where they make their champions.

They may know the "science" but they don't know how to TEACH IT - and that's the only thing that matters. They say they never have the "crème de la crème" but I would argue that it's the ATHLETES who never get the "crème de la crème" to work with.

It's more BS about Euro coaches only having athletes in one event...blah, blah, blah. There are college women who came in doing only one event and left doing only one event and they NEVER improved DESPITE their coaches claiming to be TJ coaches. That's a fact.

Excellent coaches "find" exceptional talent and usually it's been discarded/ignored by other "coaches".
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Marlow » Mon Jun 17, 2013 8:08 am

batonless relay wrote:
Marlow wrote:When I go to USATF coaching courses, I meet men and women who could make world-class TJers, but they never have the crème de la crème to work with. Euro coaches can focus on one girl, one event, and that's where they make their champions.

They may know the "science" but they don't know how to TEACH IT

??!!
You dismiss them without knowing a single thing about them - even who they are . . .
That explains a lot about your debate strategies.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby batonless relay » Mon Jun 17, 2013 9:01 am

Marlow wrote:
batonless relay wrote:
Marlow wrote:When I go to USATF coaching courses, I meet men and women who could make world-class TJers, but they never have the crème de la crème to work with. Euro coaches can focus on one girl, one event, and that's where they make their champions.

They may know the "science" but they don't know how to TEACH IT

??!!
You dismiss them without knowing a single thing about them - even who they are . . .
That explains a lot about your debate strategies.

You apparently know everything about these coaches and with all the athletes available in the US, these "experts in their field" couldn't find more than a handful to qualify on the B-standard - forget about the A of 14.40? And, it never occurred to you to ask, how do you know they're good? Or was it a Quid Pro Quo thing where if they said you were good, then you would say they were good? If that's the case then I guess it's a bit of a prisoner's dilemma where you can all say you're experts as long as the others don't confess.

As for my debate strategies? It's your strategy that is unfortunately on display: when cornered for making an erroneous claim/charge, change the subject or attack something/someone else. It's instructive that you don't mention where the 13.5ers were before you masterfully took over and helping them to settle at ... 35/36'. I submit that better coaching would have moved their PB's farther, faster - and with more consistency.

Amber Jackson of Gateway HS in Florida is a senior who has PBs in the 400m and 800m of 75.78 and 2:42.37, respectively. She's jumped 38'4.5" Needless to say she's probably no better than 13.5...by comparison...she found a coach? http://www.athletic.net/TrackAndField/A ... ID=2026687

Ashley Giacomucci. Probably no better than 13.5...by comparison found a coach? http://www.athletic.net/TrackAndField/A ... ID=2263008

Deja Hillman. PB 13.81...by comparison found a coach? http://www.athletic.net/TrackAndField/A ... ID=3041161

I asked you serious questions and you didn't answer one. Would answering havebetrayed your confidence to the "club of experts"?

Of the 95 women on TFFRS, and these are the best of college - mind you, only 18 were able to better 13m. 18!! Take out wind-aided marks and you have maybe a dozen. Take out the foreigners and you have about 10. 10 athletes who can break 13m, most of those just barely out of tens of thousands, but we should be extolling the expertise of coaches you meet at conferences? Did it ever occur to you that it was a certification mill? Now, I see why you want to restrict foreigners from competing in the NCAA. Not because they take scholarships from Americans but because they expose the "talents" of coaches who might do their athletes a favor by selling insurance or starring in infomercials.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Marlow » Mon Jun 17, 2013 11:59 am

batonless relay wrote:Amber Jackson of Gateway HS in Florida is a senior who has PBs in the 400m and 800m of 75.78 and 2:42.37, respectively. She's jumped 38'4.5" Needless to say she's probably no better than 13.5...by comparison...she found a coach? http://www.athletic.net/TrackAndField/A ... ID=2026687

Ashley Giacomucci. Probably no better than 13.5...by comparison found a coach? http://www.athletic.net/TrackAndField/A ... ID=2263008

Wow - you know nothing abut these girls and I've seen both jump. I know exactly why they jump far. You literally don't have a clue.

And know that we've had our little tete-a-tete, I'm out before you get banned again.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby batonless relay » Mon Jun 17, 2013 12:08 pm

Marlow wrote:
batonless relay wrote:Amber Jackson of Gateway HS in Florida is a senior who has PBs in the 400m and 800m of 75.78 and 2:42.37, respectively. She's jumped 38'4.5" Needless to say she's probably no better than 13.5...by comparison...she found a coach? http://www.athletic.net/TrackAndField/A ... ID=2026687

Ashley Giacomucci. Probably no better than 13.5...by comparison found a coach? http://www.athletic.net/TrackAndField/A ... ID=2263008

Wow - you know nothing abut these girls and I've seen both jump. I know exactly why they jump far. You literally don't have a clue.

And know that we've had our little tete-a-tete, I'm out before you get banned again.

WE (you and I) have had nothing; whatever you're having please don't share. This also has nothing to do with any banning, if you want to be "out" then you don't have to respond but it's like you're looking for a fight. FYI, when you do that [thing you do] gh is less likely to accede to your wishes. That being said, I'm pretty confident that you don't know why they jump "far" (actually farther than 35/36 w/13.5+ speed). And, getting back to the "case in point"...who knows, with non-American coaching they might be able to learn how to triple jump even farther, but at least they're jumping 38+ feet.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby uakari » Mon Jun 17, 2013 7:41 pm

El Toro wrote:Look on the bright side, Marlow, at least she is not white, otherwise she would be automatically moved up to middle distance.


whoooaaaa. easy on the generalizations there. it wasn't too long ago that a white female TJ represented the US (not to mention LJ, 100H and 400H).
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby dtrainer » Tue Jun 18, 2013 12:26 pm

I believe that the problem with US women's triple jump lies not with the lack of coaching but indeed with the lack of available talent and the redirecting of capable athletes towards other events. Most world class athletes have the potential to be world class in other events. Christian Taylor ran 45sec lead off legs for Florida, Svante Stringfellow splitting 45's for ole miss back in the day. Imagine what if Jackie Joiner Kersee focused on tj. I can imagine Dee Dee Trotter being the prototypical triple jumper. All you have to do is view the athleticism of the females playing basketball. Simply put our most capable athletes are redirected towards other events and sports. Im not knocking our current crop of jumpers but i will bet that most were put in the triple jump because of their limited ability to succeed at the highest levels in other events. What we as coaches(including myself) is not taking the most talented athletes and seeing them as potential triple jumpers first. We(US) have some very capable triple jump coaches.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby MDelano » Tue Jun 18, 2013 10:29 pm

The men are doing fine in the TJ, so how can one blame the coaches?
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Powell » Tue Jun 18, 2013 11:42 pm

MDelano wrote:The men are doing fine in the TJ, so how can one blame the coaches?


Are they? Yes, the US has currently got 2 men at the very top in global terms, but apart from that, not a whole lot. On the 2012 world list, there were just 4 Americans in the top 50, compared to 7 Cubans. The men are doing a lot better than the women, but not all that great, TBH.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby batonless relay » Thu Jun 20, 2013 1:02 am

If your only tool is a hammer everything looks like a nail.

Coaches, even the very good ones (especially the very good ones?), tend to pound round pegs into square holes. Whatever that coaches respective specialty might be, s/he's going to mold athletes to fit it (I read a gh quote where Lydiard said he could have Henry Carr running 1:40 within 3 years. Not under 10, not under 20...under 1:40). I know of a coach who walked across campus, asked a regular college student to walk-on after watching her running around campus, and turned that athlete into an NCAA Champion - in that coaches specialty. Rick Suhr, never having PV'd decides that he's going to become one of the best PV coaches in the US and then goes and finds a basketball player to become the American record holder in wPV. Peter Coe, to my knowledge had never coached, turned his son into one of the best middle distance runners ever. Maybe if Ashton Eaton grew up in Texas we'd be talking about his chances in the 100m this weekend. The fact that the US has produced so few wTJ of world standard (only 2 American women in the history of the US could have made the Moscow A of 14.40) -practically none- to me suggests that no coach has been focussed on it, which means no coach has the proficiency - because when coaches are single-minded about an event they make it happen. Yes, it's easy to say the athletes choose, but that's not the case. I'm pretty confident that some of those Cuban TJers could do other events, but again, Coaches pound round pegs into square holes. The idea that not a single "capable/good/excellent" American coach has had the opportunity to work with a possible wTJ world beater is impossible. Too many athletes. Too many facilities. A "coach" would have found a few.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Marlow » Thu Jun 20, 2013 5:46 am

batonless relay wrote:Coaches, even the very good ones (especially the very good ones?), tend to pound round pegs into square holes. Whatever that coaches respective specialty might be, s/he's going to mold athletes to fit it

You seem to have a very dim view of coaches.
A. Most (esp. the better ones) coaches can coach a variety of events; there are really only three (and a half) areas: sprints/hurdles/jumps, distance, throws. (Pole Vault is the half event).
One-event coaches surely thrive at the top, but that's because they attract people who have already done very well in the event. Even Clyde Hart only takes on proven talent (and performance).
B. Most coaches (esp. good ones) seek out the BEST event for their athletes, not just the one they 'like' the most. Both athlete and coach are looking to maximize potential.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby batonless relay » Fri Jun 21, 2013 8:07 am

Marlow wrote:
batonless relay wrote:Coaches, even the very good ones (especially the very good ones?), tend to pound round pegs into square holes. Whatever that coaches respective specialty might be, s/he's going to mold athletes to fit it

You seem to have a very dim view of coaches.
A. Most (esp. the better ones) coaches can coach a variety of events; there are really only three (and a half) areas: sprints/hurdles/jumps, distance, throws. (Pole Vault is the half event).
One-event coaches surely thrive at the top, but that's because they attract people who have already done very well in the event. Even Clyde Hart only takes on proven talent (and performance).
B. Most coaches (esp. good ones) seek out the BEST event for their athletes, not just the one they 'like' the most. Both athlete and coach are looking to maximize potential.

I don't have a dim view of coaches, I just don't have an inflated one of marginal coaches. And you're wrong about most good coaches; most good coaches specialize. Mike Holloway won XC State while at Buchholz a few years, yet he coaches sprints and hurdles (doesn't do much distance coaching now); Loren Seagrave coachs sprint/hurdles/jumps; Alberto Salazar coaches distance. Don't see too many throws coaches working with distance runners or sprinters (though I can think of one who could). Which brings me to your point that most coaches CAN coach a variety of events; 3.5 was the number you came up with. Well, if one of the events is American wTJ, then they might want to forgo the other 2.5.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby mal » Fri Jun 21, 2013 1:49 pm

MDelano wrote:The men are doing fine in the TJ, so how can one blame the coaches?


"men" ?

A couple are. But this is a country of over 300 million people. All well fed, educated and with people hovering over them looking for a bandwagon to get rolling. Even if they head into football, many / most have access to track and field coaching in the high school.

Its easy to say that the pro / major sports steal your athletes, but there should be plenty left in this enormous talent pool.

I'd say the lack of success is equally sub-standard coaching, to go with athletes heading into pro sports.

Though to take an example, Demps is coming back from football. I wouldn't be expecting him to pressure the Jamaicans.

The USA has become a country of high expectations coupled with high entitlement.

Your coaching is only as good as the athletes you turn out. That means we're going through a dry period or a period of decline.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Marlow » Fri Jun 21, 2013 3:22 pm

mal wrote:Your coaching is only as good as the athletes you turn out.

I'd invert that to say that for the outside observer, 'your coaching is only as good as the athletes you get.' Any competent coach can take an athletic freak and make him/her a champion. A truly superb coach can take an average athlete and make him good, not great. On the other hand, it was the Marra/Eaton marriage that produced that herculean offspring; they both needed to be superb.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby mal » Sun Jun 23, 2013 5:53 am

Marlow wrote:
mal wrote:Your coaching is only as good as the athletes you turn out.

I'd invert that to say that for the outside observer, 'your coaching is only as good as the athletes you get.' Any competent coach can take an athletic freak and make him/her a champion. A truly superb coach can take an average athlete and make him good, not great. On the other hand, it was the Marra/Eaton marriage that produced that herculean offspring; they both needed to be superb.



In my experience racing and coaching, I think the physical talent is a lot closer than people think. I think the biggest differentiation is in the mental capability. Whether its handling the intensity of the sessions, or the consistency, or the technical guidance. Or the racing pressures. I think the physical ability is a lot more common.

I am not saying that everyone is a superstar, but that the talent in the top 1% is pretty regular.

I don't think there are any 'true' athletic freaks. Just people who are able to get at their talent a little more regularly. Gay drags more out of himself than anyone I have ever seen.

Coaching an athletic freak puts more pressure on the coach than the athlete.
So I'll repeat, you are only as good as the results you get. No excellence is guaranteed, and freaky physical talent may have zero mental ability. Million dollar legs 10 cent brains.

My old coach used to say 'there are world champions walking the streets never knowing they were good at something'
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Marlow » Sun Jun 23, 2013 9:14 am

mal wrote:I think the biggest differentiation is in the mental capability. Whether its handling the intensity of the sessions, or the consistency, or the technical guidance. Or the racing pressures.

Mental is indeed a HUGE factor. I'd characterize it more as 'motivation'. How badly do they want it?
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby mal » Sun Jun 23, 2013 11:15 am

Marlow wrote:
mal wrote:I think the biggest differentiation is in the mental capability. Whether its handling the intensity of the sessions, or the consistency, or the technical guidance. Or the racing pressures.

Mental is indeed a HUGE factor. I'd characterize it more as 'motivation'. How badly do they want it?


Somewhat, but if you ask anyone, they all want it. But there is a steeliness and focus that goes beyond mere motivation. That is a far more rare resource to work with. And sacrifice. Something not so common today.

If it was about physical ability you could probably not bother to have the race. You could pencil in the winners. However, physical talent is far more common than people recognize.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Marlow » Sun Jun 23, 2013 11:21 am

mal wrote: if you ask anyone, they all want it.

Talk is cheap. The ones who REALLY want it, put in the extra (hard) work in the weight room and on the track to get every ounce of ability out of themselves. That is a VERY rare commodity.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby mal » Sun Jun 23, 2013 12:26 pm

Marlow wrote:
mal wrote: if you ask anyone, they all want it.

Talk is cheap. The ones who REALLY want it, put in the extra (hard) work in the weight room and on the track to get every ounce of ability out of themselves. That is a VERY rare commodity.


Exactly. And there are a lot of inexpensive athletes 'trying' to make it.

Athletes today are much more 'needy' than in the past. When I was running we (I) had complete disinterest in future financial security. Now there is so much money around in all sports than its hard to compete and not have some expectations of 'comfort".

There's not enough desperation. And in some cases selective racing plays right into that lack.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby batonless relay » Wed Jun 26, 2013 4:38 am

mal wrote:In my experience racing and coaching, I think the physical talent is a lot closer than people think. I think the biggest differentiation is in the mental capability. Whether its handling the intensity of the sessions, or the consistency, or the technical guidance. Or the racing pressures. I think the physical ability is a lot more common.

I am not saying that everyone is a superstar, but that the talent in the top 1% is pretty regular.

I don't think there are any 'true' athletic freaks. Just people who are able to get at their talent a little more regularly. Gay drags more out of himself than anyone I have ever seen.

Coaching an athletic freak puts more pressure on the coach than the athlete.
So I'll repeat, you are only as good as the results you get. No excellence is guaranteed, and freaky physical talent may have zero mental ability. Million dollar legs 10 cent brains.

My old coach used to say 'there are world champions walking the streets never knowing they were good at something'

Amen, mal! It sometimes scares me that Marlow is a coach. Some of his views are so narrow ...cynical even; it's like someone who has been too close to something for too long with limited/no success. There are many athletes, especially on the high school/age-group level that he inhabits, that are only inhibited by the rules that coaches like Marlow keep in place. Transfer rules, season start rules ... they seem more concerned with their jobs than the kids performances.

As you said, the difference between humans is not that great and kids become VERY interested in the things that they become good at. But they need real coaches to help them find their excellence; unfortunately, you have too many coaches looking for the "messiah" athlete - the athlete who doesn't need coaching, which is appropriate since they won't get coaching with those type of coaches. Because, long before you can question how bad they want it, you have the put the strength and technical ability in place for them to understand if the goal is worth pursuing. This is where most high school coaches fall down; they don't know enough or know what they don't know to get the kids to a place where they can start believing - up until then you're only dealing with "natural" talents and the social grapplers.

wTJ in America is failing because the women don't have to be coached to score at conference meets because the standard is so incredibly low. It's become a near perfect self-feeding cycle. The worst part is the coaches who maintain that "everything's fine".
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Marlow » Wed Jun 26, 2013 5:29 am

batonless relay wrote:Amen, mal! It sometimes scares me that Marlow is a coach. Some of his views are so narrow ...cynical even; it's like someone who has been too close to something for too long with limited/no success. There are many athletes, especially on the high school/age-group level that he inhabits, that are only inhibited by the rules that coaches like Marlow keep in place. Transfer rules, season start rules ... they seem more concerned with their jobs than the kids performances.

You really are a piece of . . . work, aren't you? Cosmically clueless. The ads hominems only disserve your purpose, such that it is.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby batonless relay » Wed Jun 26, 2013 5:35 am

Marlow wrote:
batonless relay wrote:Amen, mal! It sometimes scares me that Marlow is a coach. Some of his views are so narrow ...cynical even; it's like someone who has been too close to something for too long with limited/no success. There are many athletes, especially on the high school/age-group level that he inhabits, that are only inhibited by the rules that coaches like Marlow keep in place. Transfer rules, season start rules ... they seem more concerned with their jobs than the kids performances.

You really are a piece of . . . work, aren't you? Cosmically clueless. The ads hominems only disserve your purpose, such that it is.

Marlow, ...those are NOT ad hominems, those are your attributes; if you don't like them, change them. And, "cosmically clueless" would definitely be an ad hominem, or do you not see that either?
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Marlow » Wed Jun 26, 2013 5:46 am

batonless relay wrote:
Marlow wrote:
batonless relay wrote:Amen, mal! It sometimes scares me that Marlow is a coach. Some of his views are so narrow ...cynical even; it's like someone who has been too close to something for too long with limited/no success. There are many athletes, especially on the high school/age-group level that he inhabits, that are only inhibited by the rules that coaches like Marlow keep in place. Transfer rules, season start rules ... they seem more concerned with their jobs than the kids performances.

You really are a piece of . . . work, aren't you? Cosmically clueless. The ads hominems only disserve your purpose, such that it is.

Marlow, ...those are NOT ad hominems, those are your attributes; if you don't like them, change them. And, "cosmically clueless" would definitely be an ad hominem, or do you not see that either?

Semantics is not your strong suit. As for the 'clueless' comment, I was referring to your observations, not you, but I'm beginning to suspect . . .
When you said this recently to JRM:
batonless relay wrote:Hypocrite is a word I want you to look up. It will help you in your every day life. No, really, trust me.

and this to 26:
batonless relay wrote:26, I know others have said this of you, so don't take it personally - some times you're posts are nearly unintelligible due to your excess rhetoric.


I see the problem.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby batonless relay » Wed Jun 26, 2013 6:16 am

Marlow, I really want you to recognize that you usually DON'T ... see the problem. You're too busy self-appointing yourself something or other expert with Stanford, navy, coach, whatever being your credentials. yet, despite your self-credentialing, you haven't accomplished anything. You know don't know what you don't know and you're too bottled up to see beyond yourself.

You think you're out-clevering everyone but the facts are what they are: great high school coaches turn out great high school talent. Where's yours? I read in a thread in the historical section of this very forum viewtopic.php?f=5&t=51080 where a high school had 3 athletes under 9:00 and that was damn near 40 years ago! That was a confluence of talent and geography? That was just "motivation"? That was just "them wanting it more"? No, that was something that you can't seem to accept; that was superior coaching!! 3 students from the same high school! You can't imagine it, i bet. Well, they had a coach, he didn't have to imagine it; he probably BELIEVED it all along. You don't, see how that works?

So you can try to be cute; and when the questions get tough try to out-semantics everyone with the guile of a Stanford educated, high school teacher or you can just admit that you're wrong; that though you try to be helpful and that there may not be a better coach at the school; and that you're doing the best that you can, but stop trying to say that not only are you doing all that you can do (and that others are too) but that you're doing it exceptionally (or even capably, good or great). They're not, you're not and it's offensive when you say that you/they are - especially when the results clearly say something different.

It's not about you, Marlow. Stop making it so.
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby Marlow » Wed Jun 26, 2013 6:22 am

batonless relay wrote:Marlow, I really want you to recognize that you usually DON'T ... see the problem.

You're such a little ray of sunshine, brightening our day. We're all so fortunate that you grace us with your presence. I can't possibly match your erudition, so I defer to your judgement in all matters. These repeated tete-a-tetes, which you deny, but try so hard to sustain, are futile, so I'll exit the bus here.

(P.S. What would call a coach who has had a state pole vault champion 8 years out of the last 9?)
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Re: Case in point - Ami wTJ

Postby batonless relay » Wed Jun 26, 2013 6:33 am

Marlow wrote:These repeated tete-a-tetes, which you deny, but try so hard to sustain, are futile, so I'll exit the bus here.

They really only exist in your mind, I've no issue with you...you seem to have the issues with me. Time and time again I ask you questions and rather than answer ... well, you turn into...well into a bit of not so nice person.

You've said that the US needs 11.4 talent for A-standard triple jumping, yet other countries have done it with less. You say that the coaching is as good or better than it is in the other countries yet the US currently doesn't have a single athlete on the B-standard. You say that foreign athletes spend more time with their coaches yet even their juniors, who couldn't have as much time or maturation outperform our seniors. Yet it's NOT coaching?

"mal" entered the conversation to reiterate what I've been telling you every time but you still won't accept it because it doesn't fit your view ... and it's ME? It's not me. The problem needs fixing, stop making excuses. You can keep restarting threads but its starting to read like propaganda; like if you keep your eyes close the reality will change. It's the coaching, Marlow.
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