Coach McGannon center, navy sport coat

Hall of Fame induction at Princeton, March 2023

“We will never lose our poise.  We will be in better condition than our opponents.  We will be relentless about our skill development. When adversity comes, we will be ready.  These are hallmarks of mentally strong players, teams, programs and organizations.”

Coach McGannon

Congratulations Princeton for advancing to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA March Madness tournament. (Wins over Arizona and Missouri)  Coach Walters (bow tie) was 3 time All Ivy Selection at Princeton (with Bill Bradley) and then the 20 year AD at his alma mater after his stint at Dartmouth, where he was my coach.  Walters was a protege of Princeton Coach Pete Carill, who also recruited me.  I would have gone to Princeton except for 1 minor detail:  I did NOT get in!  Imagine that!  Academics over athletics!

The word “shocker” has been used in every news story about Princeton’s wins.  I assure you it was no shock to these guys.  The principles of SHARP SKILLS, the best CONDITIONED athletes and then MENTALLY TOUGH players were taught everyday in practice.  If college basketball is a goal for your son or daughter, Basics is the correct choice.  Slow and steady wins the race!  (YES, the Tortoise and the Hare fable!)  I have been at this since 2006 and am always amazed how many good young players there are in Michigan who then focus on outcomes, games and results when ALL THAT MATTERS is their skill development, conditioning and mental growth as young players.  Never mistake activity for achievement.   Watch last 4 minutes of the Princeton-Arizona game here. NOTE: Arizona did not score and had their shots blocked 3 x by a smaller, less athletic team.  This equals AWARENESS + ANTICIPATION.  Awareness and anticipation are SKILLS, just like running, jumping, shooting and rebounding.  They must be taught and practiced.


Vox Clamantis in Deserto

“A voice crying out in the wilderness”

That Latin phrase is the motto of Dartmouth College, my alma mater.  It speaks to the remote location Dartmouth enjoys in the White Mountains of New Hampshire but as importantly, the tight knit community that setting fosters.

The men in the photo above are many of my team mates from my time playing basketball at Dartmouth.  Coach Gary Walters was also present.  This photo was taken at an Ivy League Hall of Fame induction ceremony at Princeton in March of 2023.

It has been 40 years since I have seen many of these men, yet like a band of brothers, we reunited as if it were yesterday.  It was a remarkable weekend, one that has generated this page.  My hope is it more fully explains how and why Basics has no peer in helping develop not just the best basketball players, but well rounded and community conscious young men and women.

Basketball was a priority at Dartmouth but critically, not THE priority.  As 18 to 22 year olds at a difficult and challenging school, we were taught the following traits everyday.  At the time, it seemed overwhelming and often impossible to balance the rigors of practice and competition with the enormous work load in class.  We did not all make it.  There were times I did not think I was going go make it.  I often joke that the block later D for Dartmouth also stood for my GPA after my sophomore year!

But in the locker rooms, on campus, in class, on hours-long bus rides and just in passing, these men supported me.  They encouraged me. They commiserated with me.  They made me feel I was part of something larger, a team ON and OFF the court.

At Basics, we will do our very best to not just help your children learn the game and compete.  We will also foster these traits as your children mature from adolescence to young adulthood.  Thank you.

Coach Jim McGannon

  • Hard work
  • Respect for others
  • Timeiiness
  • Listening skills
  • Make eye contact
  • Truthfullness
  • School is always FIRST
  • Maintain a positive attitude
  • Everything in moderation.  ie: Balance
  • Assist those in need
  • Honesty
  • Resilience
  • Encourage others
  • Give credit where credit is due
  • Be thankful
  • Be accountable for your actions (integrity)
  • Kindness
  • Treat others as you would like to be treated (the Golden Rule)