Another time Morrison had a team with talent but no leadership, no aggression. Nothing he did motivated them. Ogilvie advised him to somehow force physical contact. Morrison tried that in practice all week without much luck.
"Ten minutes before the game Friday night," he said, "I took them off the floor and went upstairs to the wrestling room, where they had a medicine ball. The players looked at me like I had flipped my lid. I split them into two teams and told them they had one minute to get the ball to one end of the room or the other.
"There was a hell of a struggle, but one of them did. 'Now, we're ready,' I said. We went downstairs with bloody noses and scratches and whipped an undefeated team by 20 points."
Many times the test results only reinforce the coach's opinion, or tell him what he would eventually learn anyway. But, say The Shrinks, why lose games while learning a player's quirks? Why not learn the best way to motivate a man when he's a freshman or rookie and save some grief? For instance, Basketball Coach Dick Edwards of Pacific had a player whose scores showed he tended to be highly suspicious of other people.
"I had to try to show him I could be trusted," he said. "By winning his confidence, I believe I was able to release his overcautious self on the basketball court."
Ogilvie and Tutko themselves are as motivated as any of the athletes they've tested. Tutko, who could pass for a mad professor when he gets enthusiastic about something (which is often), has a full load of psychology classes at San Jose State, works on the side as a marriage counselor and consults with a computer-dating outfit. He is a coal miner's son from Gallitzin, Pa. and once coached basketball in the Marine Corps. Ogilvie, a husky ex-wrestler, teaches classes, counsels troubled students and helps a nearby town test prospective policemen. As if all that didn't give them enough to do, they are immersed in sports psychology: interviewing, testing, scoring, writing papers and, between the two of them, speaking at 100 clinics a year from Florida to Rome to Edmonton.
Before Tutko arrived at San Jose, Ogilvie was counseling athletes with problems: depression-prone football players, malingering high jumpers, distance runners afraid of success. He was ready to conclude that all jocks were "overcompensating, psychoneurotic kooks," but the two of them did some work on "personality variables in athletics" and discovered that Ogilvie had been seeing too homogeneous a group. Once he broadened his sampling, it turned out that most high-level athletes have personalities as solid as their muscles, especially when properly motivated. It was an easy step from there for the professors to found their institute.
They started their testing programs by giving a whole battery of tests, but coaches complained about time lost from practice. So Tutko and Ogilvie decided to make up their own items. They found out what traits "seemed to stand out" in top athletes and then waded through a great deal of technical test construction. Typical personality-test items like "I like to succeed, true or false," became "I have had dreams of succeeding in athletics. (A) all the time (B) most of the time (C) some of the time." They've been honing the instrument ever since.
Ogilvie and Tutko always ask that coaches themselves take the test, and most of the time, "They're not only willing, they're anxious. It's another challenge in their lives. They want to measure themselves up against other coaches." The results show that coaches at all levels have an "incredible desire for success." One winning football coach, Don Coryell of San Diego State, "falls above the 99th percentile with regard to his achievement needs; his [average] athlete falls slightly below the 40th."
Sometimes the professors advise bringing in an assistant coach who rates high in the particular traits lacking in the head man but in most cases the traits can be gradually changed. A punisher and driver in the Vince Lombardi mold can't change his methods overnight, however. They once counseled a hard-driving coach to ease up on his men. The coach agreed to try. There was no more screaming and stomping at practices, no lengthy public chew-outs. Everything was reasonable and calm. By the second game after the transformation, the team captain paid the coach a call at home. After some initial hemming and hawing, he finally blurted out, "Why have you given up on us? What's happened? You don't seem to really care anymore."