Friday January 16th, 2015

How often do we see coaches screaming at their players, seemingly attempting to motivate by intimidation? Miami basketball coach Jim Larranaga has a much more soothing approach. 

Larranaga told reporters Thursday about how he uses butterflies to inspire his team before big games. He's been doing it since he was the coach at George Mason, which he led to the Final Four in 2004.

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“Back in 2004, we did [a butterfly release] with our George Mason team," Larranaga said, according to The Sun-Sentinel. "And so we repeated it this year in October sometime. We released the butterflies in hopes they would bring us good luck. The thing about that is you might think it’s silly, foolish, a waste of time, a waste of money, but when our players at George Mason were being interviewed for the Final Four run, they talked about that. They talked about our goal was to get to the Final Four and that was the journey we were going on and we knew it was going to take us a long time to get there. But like the butterflies, we were going to stick together and fly together in this journey. We wanted to create that mindset because quite honestly, we have a young team. We have these two full years together with this group."

It's not exactly the kind of tactic you would expect from a guy from the Bronx, but it seems to be working. The Canes are 12-4 this season, and 3-1 against ranked teams. 

- Dan Gartland

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