REX NOTTAGE was coaching the coaches as well as the junior Thunderbolt basketballers at Tamworth Sports Dome yesterday.
Morning sessions with the Thunderbolt Under 12 and 14s and then the Thunderbolt Under 16 and 18s were followed by an afternoon session with local coaches.
Nottage, who is a qualified pilot, has been in the business of coaching for more than 30 years, said Tamworth Basketball Association publicity officer Troy Jeffriess.
“He’s been NSW director of coaching, NSW ITC coach and coached various state and Australian teams,” Jeffriess said.
“He is a NCAS level 3 coach and provides coaching education for Basketball Australia.
“He’s also coached in the NBL, Waratah State League and overseas in the US and Europe. Rex is the director of Basketball at Newington College. They were silver medallists at the recent Australian All School Championships.
“We’re lucky he has been linked to Tamworth Basketball for many years, ever since he headed our Basketball Academy with Greg O’Toole many years ago.
“He and Greg are great mates and Rex keeps on coming back to help us out.
“He was going to fly up but the weather being as it is he has stayed on the ground and that forced us to cancel Saturday night’s coaches session. But he did the juniors this morning and is doing the coaches at lunchtime. It’s great to have someone of his stature here and great that he has retained that link over the years for us.”
His coaching tips, for players and coaches alike, are simple, direct and extremely helpful for blossoming players and coaches alike. The Thunderbolt juniors begin their Northern Junior League season in mid-April, Jeffriess said.
“A lot of this will help them out.
“They are good listeners and take note of everything he has been telling them. The kids are really focused on putting whatever he shows into practice.”
Greg O’Toole has known Nottage since he first attended a coaching camp as a 17-year-old aspiring basketballer.
“He is an outstanding coach,” O’Toole said.
“Last week we had the Cronulla and Newcastle NRL sides here with Wayne Bennett talking to the kids. What a lot of people don’t realise its that Rex is the same calibre. He’s coached at North Carolina and been an assistant coach with the Indiana Pacers, all over Europe and here in Australia. And here he is putting it back in at the grass roots level of the game.”