Coach calls on 12-year-old: Pat Knight uses small boy to teach team valuable lesson

If that headline sounds like something out of a Dickens story, well, it isn’t. It’s more the story of a goofy coach using a gimmick on his players — and probably embarrassing them in the process — in order to teach them a lesson about missed layups. But it is funny, and maybe a little poignant, all the same.

See, Texas Tech coach Pat Knight needed to get his point across. Stop missing layups, you idiots. Ah, but how to do so? Layup drills? Sprints? Taking a small child into the huddle during the middle of a game? Would you be surprised if I told you it was the last one? Yes, in the middle of a game against Stephen F. Austin, Knight reacted to his players’ missed layups by grabbing a 12-year-old out of the stands and asking him if he could hit layups. And so our story begins:

After Texas Tech botched as many as 15 layups, Knight scoured the stands near the bench and invited a youngster to join a team huddle. Knight asked the boy whether he could make layups. The boy said he could. “I was just tired of having 18- or 21-year-olds miss layups that a 12-year-old could hit, so I brought a 12-year-old in to let them know that he could hit layups,” Knight said. “He’s 12, and he can hit layups, so why can’t you when you’re 18 to 21?”

Naturally, Tech went on to win the game, surely the product of an ingenious coaching strategy by this modern-day Lombardi the fact that Texas Tech, missed layups or not, should never lose to Stephen F. Austin. Fortunately for Knight, this isn’t the most egregious display of recruiting activity this year — Billy Donovan was seen holding a jersey to a woman’s pregnant stomach at halftime of Florida’s win over N.C. State Saturday. “Can you see yourself in this jersey, unnamed child? I can’t, because I don’t know what you will look like. But if you get your mother’s stare-down, I’m sure we have a spot for you at point guard. Call me!”

*from Yahoo Sports at*