Open Mike: The Keys to Success Mike Tufano October 23, 2014 Features, Open Mike 1. Honesty2. Treat women with respect3. No drugs4. No stealing5. No guns 1. COMMITMENT to common goals and to being successful.2. UNSELFISHNESS: There is no “I” in TEAM.3. UNITY: Come together as never before.4. IMPROVE everyday… as a player, person, and student.5. BE TOUGH mentally and physically.6. SELF-DISCIPLINE: Do it right, don’t accept less.7. GREAT EFFORT8. ENTHUSIASM9. ELIMINATE MISTAKES: Don’t beat yourself.10. NEVER GIVE UP: Never-Never-Never11. DON’T ACCEPT LOSING. If you do so one time, it will be easy to do so for the rest of your life.12. NO SELF-LIMITATIONS: Expect more of yourself.13. EXPECT TO WIN and truly believe we will.14. CONSISTENCY: Your very, very best every time.15. LEADERSHIP: Everyone can set an example.16. RESPONSIBILITY: You are responsible for your own performance. If you eliminate Kansas’s interim head coach Clint Bowen from the conversation, Charlie Strong is the newest addition to the Big 12. And as long as you don’t count solely by the 2nd tenure, by measure of tenure and age, Bill Snyder is the elder statesman of the conference. You know the story of how Bill Snyder walked into Manhattan, Kansas, ignoring the thoughts of “Futility U,” but saw the potential in the people, and a change of culture. The story has been written, and now re-written. And as the chapters continue to be added, the Hall of Fame appendix is now just around the corner. A feat only someone who makes it into coaching at age 75 can achieve. Charlie Strong, on the other hand, has a shorter story. One that begins with success at Louisville as the prelude, and remains to be written at Texas. But he’s attempting to follow a similar path that other coaches have found to be the way. Change the culture, you change the level of success. It’s been a part of Nick Saban’s “Process” plan at Alabama, and other coaches have tried to emulate the attitude shift that must precede the addition of talent and in-game coaching. What’s key is just make sure you surround yourself with good people. And the mission is very simple; it will never change. We will make sure we graduate our young men. We want to make sure we go compete for championships, but we want to make sure they become a better person than they were when they came into the program.-Charlie Strong In Charlie Strong’s version, it’s the “5 Core Values.” He used them at Louisville, and transported them to Austin. He’s thrown about a dozen people off the team that, apparently, for one reason or another, don’t hold those core values. And that’s saying something. With entries like “no drugs,” and “no stealing,” Charlie Strong’s list of core values is less about creating quality young men and more about letting them know what they shouldn’t be. Which, as the NFL is finding out this season, isn’t something to be ignored. Before the Ray Rice fiasco there was Charlie Strong’s “Treat women with respect.” But on his list you find only one positive trait. Honesty. Perhaps in the majority of today’s college football programs that may be the best that we can hope for. The Texas Board of Regents even felt it was a big enough deal to issue an official endorsement. Really, if you were to look at them, you would see they’re intrinsic values that you would teach your children and everybody in this room would teach their children. It’s common sense more than anything else.-Bill Snyder But if you want to look at where the process of changing the culture to find a way to win began, look no further than the head coach’s office in Manhattan. Rather than core values that basically say, “Hey, try not to get in trouble,” Bill Snyder’s 16 goals inspire. Players live and breathe them. Former K-State defensive back Nigel Malone once said, “I felt like I was a disciplined guy coming in, definitely feel like I was very well-mannered, but it’s a different animal up here. I tell you, it’s different.” It is different. It’s not about what you shouldn’t do. It’s about who you are. It’s about who you can be. It’s about who you need to be. No Texas fan is hanging a “No guns” sign above their cubicle, but thousands of K-State fans have Bill Snyder’s 16 goals in plain view. Because, as common sense as they may be, when you embody them, that’s when you know you’ll find success in whatever you do. Just ask that soon-to-be hall of famer. He knows a little something about success.