Skip to main content

John Thompson once punished his players by making them drink beer in practice

john thompson

The legendary Georgetown head coach John Thompson passed away last year. Still, his legacy, achievements, and impact will forever be remembered, especially by those who had the opportunity to be coached by this legendary man. After spending two years in the NBA, in which he won two championships for the Boston Celtics, Thompson dedicated his life to inspiring others and being a coach and a father figure for many of his players.

Thompson spent 27 years with Georgetown Hoyas developing several HOF NBA players along the way. His approach was different from other coaches because he really wanted to connect with his players personally, which Allen Iverson can attest to because Thompson provided a father figure for him when he needed it the most.

Throughout his career, Thompson showcased compassion and guidance for his players, but he was also an old-school coach who didn't tolerate misbehavior and wanted his players to be fully dedicated to the ultimate goal. In his book 'I came as a shadow', Thompson details how he handled players who were drinking beers on the campus, and he found out about their activities and decided to punish them in practice in a unique way.

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

The next practice, I ran the hell out of them before giving them a water break. Every player had his own water bottle with his number on it. I had put Heineken in the water bottles of the beer drinkers.

John Thompson, via I came as a shadow

Thompson also wasn't afraid to cuss his players out when needed because he understood that for some of them, that was the only way they would understand the severity of the situation they got themselves in.

I hit them with every curse word in the book and might have invented a couple more on the spot. It's not Gatorade, it's what yall were drinking last night. Ya'll think I'm stupid? I know what ya'll are doing, and it better stop.

John Thompson, via I came as a shadow

That is an unorthodox way of punishing his players but definitely something that needed to be done to get his message across. Nowadays, it's hard to imagine coaches in the NCAA or NBA doing something similar to what Thompson did, which is one of the reasons he is one of the most decorated college coaches. Thompson proved throughout the years his system and the values he imposes on his players' works, and if you look at his resume, there is no question he is an all-time great coach.

Brooklyn Nets forward Blake Griffin

Blake Griffin shares important financial advice to young NBA stars: 'Wait till that second contract'

Blake Griffin has a helpful financial advice to the younger generation of NBA stars based on his own experience managing money

How a simple Kobe Bryant gesture changed Spencer Dinwiddie’s life

How a simple Kobe Bryant gesture changed Spencer Dinwiddie’s life

Bryant told Dinwiddie that he's playing like an All-Star in his eyes. Those are the only words Dinwiddie needed to continue working hard.

Allen Iverson’s one trait that caused clashes with teammates

Allen Iverson’s one trait that almost caused clashes with his teammates

Dahntay Jones and Gilbert Arenas agree that Allen Iverson's not being locked in practices could have led to clashes with his teammates.

Reggie Miller names the only player he hated guarding: Drove me absolutely mad with his antics

Reggie Miller on why he hated guarding Drazen Petrovic: "Drove me absolutely mad with his antics"

Reggie Miller shared how good Drazen Petrovic was and his trash-talking skills that Miller couldn't do anything about.

Ja Morant's Brand Could Grow Like LeBron James In Cleveland, Marketing Experts Say

Ja Morant's brand could grow like the one from LeBron James in Cleveland, marketing experts say

Amid Ja Morant's best season, marketing experts foresee his brand reaching the heights the same way LeBron James did back in Cleveland

Kevin Durant responds to the notion that the Golden State Warriors replaced him with Andrew Wiggins and still made it to the NBA Finals

Kevin Durant responds to the notion that the Golden State Warriors replaced him with Andrew Wiggins and still made it to the NBA Finals

When posed with the question of whether the Warriors replaced him with Wiggins, Durant responded by basically saying Warriors fans need to get over him leaving

Steph Curry and Draymond Green predicted the Warriors will be back in the NBA Finals

Draymond Green and Steph Curry predicted that the Golden State Warriors will again be in the NBA Finals: "Don't want to see us next year"

We look back at the predictions Green and Curry made over a year ago when everyone thought the Warriors are finally done

I do think if I played in 2022 I would do well” - Muggsy Bogues believes he could succeed in the modern NBA

“I do think if I played in 2022 I would do well” - Muggsy Bogues believes he could succeed in the modern NBA

Bogues found a way to make a name for himself in the NBA during the 1990s, but would he have been as successful in the modern era of the NBA?