Sunday, October 25, 2015

Great Insights from Peter Diepenbrock

We were very fortunate to be able to do an email interview with Jeremy's high school coach, Peter Diepenbrock. A standout player at Burlingame High School and later at Menlo College, he moved on to coaching after graduating from UCLA. He coached and played in Denmark during two separate stints, a total of six years. At one point there, he coached the Danish national women's team. Back in the U.S., he was the head coach at Pinewood and then at Palo Alto High School. He spent 11 seasons at Palo Alto as a highly successful head coach, winning three Central Coast Section titles and a California state championship with Jeremy, defeating California high school power Mater Dei in the Division II title game in 2005-2006. He also coached at Canada College for three years turning them around from a woeful 3-26 the year before he took over to an amazing 20-6 record after just 3 seasons there. Combined, his teams won in excess of 500 games. In league play at Palo Alto, his record was 113-19.

JeremyLin.Net:

Why are you coming back to coach Palo Alto High after leaving for Canada JC and then retiring?

Peter:
I never really retired.  I just coached youth basketball for the past several years.  Paly's coach took another job and I felt like taking the job was the right thing to do at this time.  We are building two new gyms and won't have a gym for the next two years.

JeremyLin.Net:
Is it true you had to kick Jeremy out of practice a few times in his early days in high school?

Peter:
I never kicked Jeremy out of practice.

JeremyLin.Net:
Was his attitude really that bad?  

Peter:
He was such a good player and he was always ultra competitive so he often struggled with motivation in certain types of practice drills.  He didn't always bring all his energy in some drills.  His attitude improved throughout his high school career.

JeremyLin.Net:
Jeremy stated that when he injured his ankle his jr year before the state playoffs, that was the turning point for him . Did you see that too and how so?

Peter:
Yes I definitely saw a much more mature Jeremy after that injury.  I think he just felt a higher sense of urgency.

JeremyLin.Net:
How tough has it been watching the last three years and why do you think things didn't work out well in and Houston and LA?

Peter:
He's had a lot of very good games the last three years.  But it definitely has been frustrating watching him play for coaches that don't trust him or believe in him or understand his game.
And I think that was the reason he didn't play up to his potential.

JeremyLin.Net:
Why do you think it's so tough for teams to see his true worth in the NBA? 
 
Peter:
I disagree with this premise.  I think there are a lot of teams that know his true worth.  There were a lot of teams that were interested in him this past off season.  I just think he needs a good coach and he hasn't had good fortune in that regard.

JeremyLin.Net:
Were you surprised like the rest of us when he signed with the hornets? 

Peter:
Yes I was surprised.

JeremyLin.Net:
What is your take on the Hornets and their coaching staff?

Peter:
I haven't watched them very much.  But talking with Jeremy it sounds like the coaching staff is very good.

JeremyLin.Net:
Besides seeing Jeremy at your summer camp, do you get to spend time with him during the summer?

Peter:
We always try and go out for some meals each summer.  We did that again this past summer as well.

JeremyLin.Net:
How often do you guys talk and do you critique his game with him in the off season or during the regular season?

Peter:
We talk regularly. Doc handles him in the off-season.  I like to watch his games and give him some feedback after each game.

JeremyLin.Net:
What do you want to see more of from Jeremy this season? 

Peter:
I just want to see a consistent approach from him each game.  I want him to play each game with an aggressive, attacking attitude.  I thinks that's when he's at his best.

JeremyLin.Net:
It's obvious he is having fun again and playing well and with a lot of confidence. How much of it is just having the opportunity and the right fit vs how much he's improved his game?

Peter:
I think with Jeremy his play is very closely tied to how his coach is handling him.  If the coach is consistent and is making decisions based on how Jeremy is performing then that is something that Jeremy can work with.

JeremyLin.Net:
What are your expectations for Jeremy and the Hornets this season?

Peter:
I expect the Hornets to challenge for a playoff spot.  I expect Jeremy to be a key contributor to their success.

JeremyLin.Net:
Can you tell us something or a short story about Jeremy that maybe no one has heard before?

Peter:
Jeremy really loves Laffy Taffy.  

JeremyLin.Net:
Thanks so much for spending time with us and sharing great insights on Jeremy! Good luck this season and I can't wait to see the new Lin-Diepenbrock Gym!


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