Coach Charlie Ward
Charlie Ward, Jr. is a retired New York Knicks basketball player. Prior to starting in
the NBA, he attended Florida State University where he won the College Football
winner, and a Major League Baseball draftee. He was inducted in the College Football
also shone his skills at the Arthur Ashe Tennis Tournament in 1994.
Ward’s message to the student-athletes is pretty simple:
“It was more about just setting the tone and attitude of what it’s going to take for us to be
successful,” Ward said. “It’s all about coaches treating the players with respect, players treating
the coaches, teachers and adults with respect and treating one another with respect. We’re all going to be in it together.
“Our attitude plays a part in how that goes. If it’s a good attitude, it spreads, that’s contagious. If it’s a bad attitude, that’s contagious as well. We try to get those spoiled apples out of the bucket, try to rehab them first, but if they keep spoiling, you have to get them out of the bucket."
Ward wants to make sure the strength in numbers is from a quality standpoint: “I’m not a big numbers guy,” Ward said. “I’m more so about the quality as opposed to the quantity. Quality will far outweigh quantity in the long run. When you are having to deal with 10 or 20 kids that may not want to be out there, the attitude’s not right, that drags everyone down.
“But if you have 70-80 kids that are willing to do whatever the coach is asking them to do, without having any attitude, I’d rather 80 of those guys as opposed to 120 guys and you have 20 guys that don’t want to do the right thing over and over. We’re willing to work with whoever comes out and help them to see the benefit of our program.”
Obviously, Ward’s name commands a little bit of clout, especially in a community so close to Florida State, where Ward made a name for himself as a standout football and basketball player. Because of that, he hasn’t had a shortage of community members offering their help in bringing the Washington program back on track.