Team Captains are just as important as coaches on a basketball team, and are just as respected by the team. The Team Captain position is one that cannot just be handed out, as it will have to be earned, and is an on court extension of the coaching staff. The position comes with certain responsibilities that must be taken seriously and that must not be abused. Some people think that being a team captain is like winning a popularity contest, which could not be further from the truth. You are the general of your team, the on court coach that keeps things flowing and relays information around from the bench and to the bench.
Team Captains are taken very seriously because of the way their positions can be used to help a team. Proper Team Captains will be able to motivate their team when it is needed, rally it out of the slump with a quick few words, and work with the coaches to solve any on the court issues that might be observed.
Coaches also have to assist a team captain with his leadership development. Just like players need tips on how to better their playing styles, team captains will need guidance when learning the ropes of leadership. No one will ever do it perfectly, but all a coach can ever ask for is the best effort someone can offer put forward. As well coaches will ensure that the team captain adheres to the responsibilities of his position and doesn`t abuse it.
The role of a team captain doesn`t end at on court duties, they are also there to help players off the court, weather it is with game skill improvement, or possibly personal issues. While a coach is there and is definitely willing to help, it is always good to have a few options open to your players just so that all the bases are covered. Some players may not feel comfortable going to a coach with certain problems, but may have an easier time going to a fellow teammate who happens to be a friends, that they know they already can trust and won`t be scared to give the whole story too.
While some people believe that not every team needs this, and think it amounts to nothing more than glorified babysitting, they need to play a game of basketball in a competitive environment. Everyone gets upset, something gets under their skin, and they need to let off some steam and just vent. Bottling it up constantly can just lead to further problems down the road, and while a coach is there to help, a team captain is usually able to handle these problems, freeing up a coach to deal with other matters and splitting up the workload, which helps everyone out in the long run.
Teams that have a respected team captain and a coach that work well together, have one of the biggest key elements to a successful team. When your team captain and coach work hand in hand, it makes the whole machine run so much smoother.