Youth Basketball Coach of the Week

Congratulations to our Coach of the Week! If you want to nominate a coach please complete the form at the bottom of this page. The Coach of the Week program honors youth basketball coaches who make substantial impacts on the sport of basketball and in the lives of their players. One coach from the Virginia, District of Columbia or Maryland area will be selected weekly beginning early December through March. The coach of the week will be featured on In order for your coach to be considered all information below must be completed by a youth basketball league administrator, coach, parent, community member and/or player.

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Coach of the Week: John Perry

1. What age is your team? Boys/Girls? Team's Record? What leagues do you play in?
13-14, 12-1, LUYAA

2. When did you know you wanted to coach basketball? How long have you been coaching?
Wow! My father had been a long time coach and I valued the impact that he had within our community. I’ve just started out but I really appreciate the influence that you can have on these kids on and off the court. I’ve coached for 3 years, 34-2 over that time.

3. What do you enjoy most about coaching?
I enjoy having the ability to add a little bit of edge and direction to the lives of our youth. These kids have grown up during a period of large-scale technological advancement. So they don’t necessarily have to participate physically in order to socialize. Some powerful attributes are lost in that tradeoff. It’s important for my generation to help provide and build that mental edge.

4. How do you go about motivating your players?
I am more of an x’s and o’s coach and we compartmentalize our responsibilities on all of our teams. In my opinion, it depends on the players. Some players welcome challenge so adding to that challenge is a source of pride, but then there are others where you have to break things down into smaller quantities in order for what you are teaching not to become overwhelming.

5. What skills/characteristics do you look for in your players?
Aggression and length. Any basketball coach will tell you that having taller kids who play tall are an advantage to any team. I can get around not having shooters or even unpolished basketball players, but it’s extremely difficult to alter a player’s personality from being passive to aggressive. Usually kids have developed a long running series of habits by the time they reach me and certain behaviors can require more time than what is allotted to unravel.

6. What is the biggest challenge you've had as a coach and how did you overcome it?
Injuries!!! Our two loses in this league were directly related to losing two very good players each year. When you push a system of compartmentalization and unique formations injuries which require a player to do something they are not used to can really have an impact on the outcome of your season. We had to move players around and switch up our system and we were able to maintain our dominance after a period of close games.

7. What advice would you give to new coaches?
Patience… Not with the kids, but with how you should respond to them. Frustration can be a cancer for a person’s reputation and motivation. You should learn from them as much as they learn from you and sometimes you have to take some hits before you can swing effectively.

8. What is your favorite Bullets/Wizards player of all time? On this year’s team?
John Wall all around. He came on to the team as the 1st overall pick with very high expectations. He wasn’t very polished to begin with and struggled with jump shots. He suffered w/ injuries and dealt with organizational changes. He received a maximum deal and took criticism regarding his effort and skill and overcame all of it by practicing and working on his weaknesses. He thrived after receiving the maximum deal and proved why he was the number one pick. Now he is one of the best point guards in the league and has led his team to the playoffs. He has made basketball exciting and fun again in Washington

9. What has been your most memorable Bullets/Wizards moment?
The most memorable Wizards moment that I have was the opportunity to take these kids to a Wizards game and partake in all of the exciting activities that the Wizards have to offer. The kids had a blast.

Past Winners

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Wizards & Mystics Youth Basketball Coach of the Week Nomination Form

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