With his final season in the books, Coach Mike Krzyzewski is taking some time to reflect on greatness away from the basketball court. He recently gave his own thoughts on the career of Bill Belichick, as discussed in a new piece from Peter King.
As Bill Belichick prepares to turn 70 years old this weekend, the accomplished Duke coach expressed admiration for the evolution of New England’s head coach.
“Watching him, it’s incredibly interesting,” Krzyzewski said. “When somebody says, ‘You’ve been doing this the same way—it’s the same job,’ no, it’s not the same job. I’m adapting; it’s exciting… That’s what I see in Bill from afar. I really admire him and like him. Because really it’s not about him, it’s about them [the players]. There’s nobody who’s built a better culture in pro sports than him. Right?”
Coach K’s comments detail the shift to the post-Brady era of Belichick’s career, building around young talent with an enthusiastic culture in the locker room with new energy. As the league evolves, so has Belichick to get his players prepared and taken care of each week.
“Pro football’s a big business, man,” Krzyzewski said. “There can be a lot of selfishness. He’s been able to manage all that. Culture should not be assumed. It needs Miracle-Gro every year, and he’s been able to keep that culture going. There’s a Patriot Way. I totally admire that.”
The evolving culture and Patriot Way established by Belichick allowed New England to still compete in the post-Brady era. As shown by Hunter Henry, Kendrick Bourne, and Matthew Judon, Foxboro is still a popular free-agent destination. Teams like New England grow the roots of success through the evolving groundwork laid by Belichick each season.
The mutual respect between two icons of their respective sports lives on as Belichick joins Krzyzewski in his 70s in a few days.
MEXICO CITY, MEXICO - NOVEMBER 19: Head coach Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots looks on prior to the game against the Oakland Raiders at Estadio Azteca on November 19, 2017 in Mexico City, Mexico. (Photo by Buda Mendes/Getty Images)
Jun 16, 2021; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick reacts during the New England Patriots mini camp at the New England Patriots practice complex. Credit: Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 22, 2020; Mobile, Alabama, USA; Alabama head coach Nick Saban at right talks with New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick during Senior Bowl practice at Ladd-Peebles Stadium. Vasha Hunt-USA TODAY Sports