Jim Larranaga
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Jim Larranaga

Head Men's Basketball Coach, University of Miami

Jim Larranaga, who has led two underperforming basketball programs from irrelevance to being true champions that captured the attention and imagination of fans everywhere, shares his leadership and teamwork strategies that apply on and off the court.

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Leading the Way: How Jim Larranaga Took The University of Miami from Irrelevant to Champions

In the last decade, Coach Jim Larranaga has led two different programs from having no notoriety to being dominant contenders on the national scene. Most recently, Larranaga  reinvigorated the University of Miami Hurricanes program from irrelevance to being ranked number two in the country and winning their first ACC title in school history—an accomplishment that earned Larranaga both AP and Naismith Coach of the Year honors. From the premise that “underdogs can beat the big dog,” Larranaga leads his team with a clear and well-defined plan that begins with recruitment and focuses on developing young talent.

Audiences will learn how to:

  • Use an underdog status to their advantage
  • Compete without the same resources the big dogs have
  • Transform the underdog status into a winning mantra

The Art of Retaining, Developing and Recruiting Talent

Finding talented, hardworking employees who will uphold the standards of your company is difficult. Coach Larranaga shares his tried-and-true methods for recruiting players and assistant coaches and for creating an environment that keeps them on the job. Larranaga tells audiences about his 8 C’s—character, competitiveness, competence, consistency, cohesiveness, commitment, communication and confidence—which are the foundation for selecting a winning staff and team and developing a championship-caliber program. Audiences will learn:

  • How to develop a program that will elevate their organization’s performance to the highest level
  • Where to find talented employees
  • How to build a winning, dedicated staff

Attitude, Commitment and Class: A Winning Philosophy and Formula for Success

You can’t always predict external factors, but you can control your own behavior and attitude, Larranaga tells audiences. He shares the formula that has made him George Mason University’s most successful head coach, one that helped him transform the relatively unknown team into one of sports’ greatest success stories. An educator first, Larranaga uses real-life examples from tough calls he has made on and off the courts to prepare his athletes for the game of life. Audiences will leave inspired, entertained and energized as they learn:

  • How to transform challenges into motivational opportunities
  • How individual attitudes can transform outcomes
  • How lessons learned on the court translate to other aspects of life, including professional careers and family life

Teamwork and Leadership: How to Achieve the Four Levels of Commitment

A team that can relax and have fun together is a winning team, Larranaga explains to audiences, describing the scene just before the Final Four competition when his players skipped routine drills to spend time with family and fans. Sharing his four tenets of commitment—physical, mental, emotional and spiritual—he illustrates how unconditional dedication produces exceptional results in athletics and in life. Larranaga shares:

  • His winning formula for creating a team that works together on the court and supports each other on the sidelines
  • How to create an environment that fosters team growth while promoting individual development
  • How to push players to their limits without wearing them down emotionally and spiritually

Meet Jim Larranaga

Jim Larranaga, who has led two underperforming basketball programs from irrelevance to being true champions that captured the attention and imagination of fans everywhere, shares his leadership and teamwork strategies that apply on and off the court.

In 2013 during his second year as Head Coach at The University of Miami, Jim Larranaga took his team being an afterthought to being ACC Champions and ranked number two in the country. This is not his first time turning the fortunes around for a fledgling program into being a national powerhouse as Larranaga improbably led an undersized and underestimated George Mason University team to the Final Four in 2006. Larranaga—who was awarded both the AP Coach of the Year and the Naismith Coach of the Year after the 2013 season—captures the attention of audiences, sharing his strategies for achievement and emphasizing organizational teamwork, attitude and commitment—not just individual talent—as essential ingredients for success on and off the court. Larranaga has proven he is a master at mentoring, locating and recruiting players and staff who will remain loyal to the team. He shows you the strategies for surrounding yourself with the best people and nurturing them until your entire team or organization achieves success. He stresses the value of hard work balanced with determination, leadership and class, describing his own formula for winning despite the odds and enjoying the journey along the way.

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Vice President, Analytics and Basketball Development, Miami Heat;Member of the 2012 and 2013 NBA Championship Miami Heat; Captain of the 2001 NCAA Championship Duke Blue Devils; “No-Stats All-Star”


Legendary Professional Golfer

Legendary Hall of Fame Head Men's Basketball Coach, University of Connecticut (1986-2012), Winner of Three National Championships (1999, 2004, 2011) and ESPN College Basketball Analyst