Describe Coach Dale’s role with Jimmy

Hoosiers

Describe Coach Dale’s role with Jimmy - Describe Coach Dale’s role with Jimmy introduction. How and why was he effective?

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            Jimmy Chitwood is Hickory’s best basketball player. However, because Jimmy is still mourning the death of their old coach, he refuses to continue playing for the Hoosiers. Myra Fleenor who helps take care of Jimmy also sets him up to focus on his academics rather than on basketball. Coach Dale’s role in Jimmy’s life is not in his success in convincing Jimmy to return to the team but rather in his success in helping Jimmy define his self-worth. Dale was effective in helping Jimmy attain a sense of freedom and purpose because unlike Myra and others in the film, he tells Jimmy that his talents are his own and no one else’s. Jimmy, according to Coach Dale, is not irreplaceable. This is highly contradictory to what Jimmy has heard from others all along. The effectiveness of Dale’s speech to Jimmy lies in the fact that 1) he shows Jimmy he has a choice on how he uses his talents and that 2) he mentions Myra thereby indicating that Jimmy’s choice on how he lives his life may be a different path from that which Myra has planned for him. When Jimmy finally decides to play for the Hoosiers, Coach Dale serves as his mentor and guide. Jimmy plays with his talent but uses it according to the rules and game plan set by Coach Dale. He allows Jimmy to flourish on his own but also drives in the very important truth that teamwork and reliance on others are essential.

What leadership principles did Coach Dale exhibit at the first pep rally?

During the first pep rally, the audience chants out for Jimmy after Coach Dale introduces his six-man line up. As the crowd chants, Coach Dale takes the microphone and rebukes the students by stressing that it is the six men in front of them who have worked hard and sacrificed, they are the team and deserve the school’s support. In this particular event, Coach Dale is engaging the audience. He stresses the reciprocal relationship existing between the school and the basketball players. The players sacrifice their time and work hard to improve their game and the rest of the school gives the players the support. Both units are integral parts of the school basketball team. Coach Dale not only engages the school but also enables them. He includes them into the team and stresses their importance in achieving victory by acknowledging that the six-man team is “your team”. Coach Dale also executes a very clear plan of action for the audience and for the team in the short rebuke he gives to the chanting crowd. “These six individuals have made a choice to work, a choice to sacrifice, to put themselves on the line 23 nights in the next 4 months to represent you, this High School. That kind of commitment and effort deserves and demands your respect.” By stating this, he has initiated a clear relationship between the school and the team and has delineated the roles of each in the partnership.

What did Coach Dale do to establish his role as head coach during the first practice?

During the first practice, Coach Dale immediately establishes his role as head coach. He makes sure that the players know that he is in charge but that joining the team is a voluntary activity. When two players talk back to him, he has them leave. The first practice, as well as the others that would follow, are completely different from the team practices with the old coach. Coach Dales’ emphasis on the importance of teamwork and his trainings that stress this concept with lessened practice with the actual basketball help to edify him as the new head coach. His new strategies and methods set him apart from the Hoosier’s old coach and force the team to either accept his standards and ways or leave the team. By sticking to his style and by enforcing his drills on the players, Coach Dale clearly announces the start of a new period in Hoosier’s history as a team. He does not try to get to know the players by continuing what his predecessor started or by having the team continue doing what they were accustomed to. He directly launches into his style of coaching and offers the players the choice of either following him or not.

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