#BillGuthridge #Punctuality @JohnRancke January 26

I started the Coach4aday blog in 2014 and have done daily posts on one topic for each year. In 2014 my daily posts were on the “Beer of the Day”, 2015 it was “A Friend of a Friend”, 2016 I wrote about “North Carolina”, and in 2017 it was “Colleges and Universities”.

The one consistent piece of feedback I have received with this blog is the 2015 series on “A Friend of a Friend”. Readers and blog followers said please bring it back. The stats also back that up with the number of views each of those posts received.

So in 2018 two things will happen with the Coach4aday blog; One I plan to collaborate with a friend named John Rancke and revisit some of those 2015 “A Friend of a Friend” posts and do some new ones with a slightly different twist. I will do post on odd days of the month and John does the even days.

In addition John and I will write about things we both are interested which will include basketball, food, people, music, our granddaughters, and great stories.

If you want to follow the blog via email go to the bottom right of the post and click the follow button.

My twitter handle is @coach4aday2 if you want to follow the blog that way.

John’s twitter handle is @JohnRancke if you want to reach out to him.

January 26, 2018       A Life Lesson learned

 Post by John Rancke

What time does your watch on your wrist say? Does it show the correct time or is it set 5-10 minutes ahead?  For years I wore a watch and until I removed it around 2010 when I started carrying a cell phone. My watch was always set for 10 minutes fast also known as Coach Bill Guthridge time.


Coach Guthridge time operates under the premise that if you are late for any reason then you consider your time more important than the person you are meeting with. They have to wait for you to arrive before the meeting or meal or whatever can occur, therefore possibly making them late for their next meeting or task. By you being late, you have affected many others that day because you are selfish.

Now in January of 1972, my freshman year of college I wasn’t selfish, I just overslept. Carolina had a Saturday afternoon game in Carmichael Auditorium at 3 pm and the Carolina Freshman team known as “The Tar Babies” played a preliminary game at 11 am. So back in the old days long before nutritionists got involved, pregame meals consisted of steak, potatoes, fruit. Nowadays it’s pasta and carb loading. The meal was always served 4 hours before game time.

Carmichael Auditorium

Carmichael 1

So an 11 am game means pregame breakfast was at 7am. This meal was served in the old Chase Cafeteria down on South campus and I resided in Lewis dorm on North campus, less than 5 minutes from Carmichael. I set 2 alarm clocks to ensure I would be at the meal on time at 7am. But I overslept!!! I turned off both alarms at 5:30 and went back to sleep awaking again at 6:50. I realized I would miss the meal so the best thing was to be in Carmichael before the coaching staff made it into the office after breakfast. I would beat them there.

At 7:20 Coach Guthridge walks into the front door of Carmichael and I’m waiting on him in my suit and an apology. I apologized, explained my mistake and turning off the alarms and missing the team breakfast. He gave me a concerned look, asked if I felt ok, and suggested I should return to my dorm room and catch up on my sleep so I would be refreshed for my classes the next week. He then stated I was not allowed into Carmichael until a week from the following Monday when I was to report to him and Coach Smith and discuss my future (if any) with the Carolina Basketball Family. Go to class, get plenty of rest, and think about your future with the Program.

(l-r) Coach Smith and Coach Guthridge

Guthridge and Smith

My mouth dropped open as I was stunned. I had an excuse and I had apologized and I was at the gym almost 2 ½ hour early and ready for the game. I wasn’t hungry so missing breakfast wasn’t the end of the world. Looking back on this Saturday morning, it could have easily been the end of MY WORLD! I shook his hand and walked back to the dorm and watched the game on T.V.  that afternoon. My seat wasn’t nearly as good as it would have been but I screwed up and I had to pay the price.

Over the years there have been various Carolina games where as the lineups were being introduced, the announcer might say that someone was not starting and would be replaced in the starting lineup by another player. Usually no explanation but it happened on several occasions.

If memory serves me correctly, one incident involved a starting player being late coming down on the elevator for pregame meal. He was less than a minute late. He explained to the coaches that his room was so high up in the hotel that when he got on, the elevator kept stopping at lower floors to pick up additional passengers. He couldn’t help being late! His excuse was answered with a straight face by Coach Guthridge. “You could have gotten on the elevator sooner”. End of story!!

Coach Guthridge had a jar on his desk. Anytime a player or manager started to give a reason or excuse for a mistake, Coach would stop him and tell him to preach into the jar and pick out a piece of paper and read what excuse was written on the paper. There was no paper with excuses written on them. The jar was called the “No Excuse Jar”.

From 1972 until today I try and arrive 10-15 minutes early for any event or meeting. I often will sit in my car in a parking lot ahead of the meeting to make sure I arrive promptly. I hate being late. For years I would start meetings or practices on time. Why penalize the ones that got there on time by waiting on the late ones to arrive.

As I have said before and all great coaches will tell you, the life lessons learned while involved in athletics will shape your life and influence you and those around you for an eternity. You learn from your mistakes and make sure when you are in that position again to not repeat the mistake.

I’m not sure where I would have ended up in 1972 and beyond if that Monday meeting with the coaches had not gone well.


Thanks For The Pass Coach

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