King of the Hill

(Personally, I would shy away from pep talks like this that introduce negative thoughts right before a game. I prefer to only introduce positive thoughts, passion and energy before a contest. But, I’ve added it to the site because some prefer this style.)

Everything is going great.
We can’t be stopped.
We are heavily favored to win tonight.
Our winning tradition is infamous.
Our record speaks for itself.
We are in a league of our own.
We can’t lose.
It just can’t happen.
Not a chance.

What if...

What if something goes terribly wrong?
What if someone gets hurt?
What if everyone plays their worst game ever?
What if we loose our focus?
What if the opponent takes it to us?
What if the unspeakable happens?
What if we defeat ourselves?
What if we loose?

Do not let that happen!

Execute on every play!
Play your best game ever!
Stay focused on every play!
Do not let adversity weaken you!
Stay ahead of the opponent!
Just as you have done countless times before!
Stay focused on your goals!
Dedicate yourself to finishing the game!
Dedicate yourself to victory once again!

(permission granted to reproduce this speech as long as author and website are sighted.
Thanks! - author - Mike Sellers, website -

Are Pre Game Speeches Beneficial?

If you have been fortunate enough to have experienced an emotional, from-the-heart pre game speech in your lifetime, then you know the answer to the question. Of course pre game speeches are beneficial. Even if a speech only resonates with the players for 5 minutes into the game, that is five minutes at peak performance that they might not have had otherwise. There are many studies, writings and testimonies on the internet to support the benefits of pre game speeches.

In the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Supplement for Fundamentals of Coaching for Colleges and Universities, Lesson Plan 28 states: "Through movies, television and tradition, we all have experienced the magical powers of a pregame pep talk. In fact, research has shown that most coaches believe that giving their team an emotional message before a game is a “must” (Mack, 1999)." The lesson goes on and provides tasks for coaches to do to prepare them for pre game talks.

In "An Exploratory Study of the Effects of Pregame Speeches on Team Efficacy Beliefs" by Tiffanye M. Vargas-Tonsing and John B. Bartholomew the researchers found that: "a possible explanation for the benefits of pregame speeches is that they result in enhanced performance efficacy. Self-efficacy is defined as a person's belief in his or her ability to perform a specific task."

"According to efficacy theory, efficacy perceptions are based on four principal sources of information: performance accomplishments, vicarious experiences, verbal persuasion, and emotional arousal (Bandura, 1977). Of these, verbal persuasion is perhaps the most convenient and readily available method for coaches, especially in the moments immediately prior to a game. Not only is verbal persuasion important for its convenience and availability, but athletic teams also consider verbal persuasion to be one of the most effective methods coaches use to build efficacy feelings."

"In summary, the results of this study indicate a coach's potential to increase athletes' feelings of team efficacy and confidence prior to competition through the effective use of a persuasive pregame speech. The further exploration of this efficacy-enhancing technique would benefit coaches in that verbal persuasion is an easily altered and readily available tool."

Yes, pre game speeches are beneficial, necessary and valued. Fire up you team for their next game with what you've learned from the website and many others.