Can the candidates for the UMaine men’s basketball  coaching job answer these questions?

A selection committee will soon be interviewing candidates for the head coaching job of the University of Maine men’s basketball team and may need a little help.

Given that, I have put together some questions that should be answered by the coaching candidates.

Some general questions:

— What are the four most important things in the recruitment of players?

— Would you keep associate head coach Doug Leichner?

— Would you recruit the best high school seniors from the state of Maine and recruit junior college players?

— Would you hold any type of early morning practices such as conditioning or weightlifting sessions?

— Would you have walk-on tryouts?

— Would you schedule any Division II or III opponents?

Here are some questions dealing with coaching players:

— Do you have the ability to demonstrate and teach how to improve shooting skills?

— How do you keep big players out of foul trouble?

— How do  you “cheat” on help defense on dribble penetration to close out the 3-point shooter after the dribble penetration has been stopped?

— How does a shooter get their shooting rhythm back during a game?

— What are the two most common fundamental shooting errors that players make?

— When is the only time a defensive player should not know where the ball is when playing on defense?

— How do you improve a player’s decision-making skills?

It would also be good for the coach to answer these questions on strategy:

— Do you foul on a three-point lead and less than 10 seconds to go in the game?

— What is the most successful offensive formation to get the ball inside to the block that makes the defense really pay for open 3-pointers or open layups?

— What is the most effective zone defense against a good 3-point shooting team?

— What rules do the players and coaches need to know?

— What is the best offensive formation to use to identify what type of defense you are facing?

— What is the best form of discipline to get your players to do what you want them to do?

How well the candidates respond in answering these questions should offer a good guide on whether one of them should be hired as the next UMaine men’s basketball coach.

Some of today’s Division I coaches rely too heavily on their assistants for practice coaching as well as help in game coaching and recruiting. It’s important that the new coach have proven recruiting skills and contacts, be able to employ coaching techniques and strategies and develop strong decision-making skills for the players.