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Hello from Scotland! ???????

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    Reading all of the preceding introductions, I can either be a wee bitty intimidated or see it as an amazing opportunity to learn and grow with folk who have such a tremendous wealth of experience amongst them! 

    Basketball is the fastest growing minority support in Scotland and it is great to be a part of it but frustrating as well because there are no development opportunities for coaches or players outwith their own clubs (unless players are selected for national squads). I’ve played since a very young age but a knee injury requiring 5 operations opened the door to coaching and it has been one of the most positive opportunities I have had. 

    Frustrated with the clubs in our region’s lack of development mindset and/or the willingness to sacrifice everything for the win (regardless if it is u10s or senior men/women), last year I started my own club. I want basketball to be a tool for our players and coaches to become the best version of themselves on and off the court. 

    I knew where I wanted to go but didn’t know quite how to get there. Watching an episode of PGC+ ‘The Peek’, Key5 Coaching was referenced and I immediately had to find out more! Serendipity! 

    I am incredibly excited to be embarking on the path to become the coach I want to be and to develop an organisation that will be a transformational. 

    Apologies for such a long message! I am tremendously excited and grateful to be a part of this community. 


    Welcome aboard Ruth. I can’t wait to learn from you. 

    Doug Smith


    Hi Ruth!

    Great to have you here, we will be eager to learn from and with you!

    Where in Scotland?  My daughter, Linnea, lives in Dundee, just having finished her bachelors degree in accounting.  She and her husband are continuing their education at University of Dundee, but Linnea has wondered about basketball clubs and such in Scotland.   She has coached many youth teams, and even was an official for one year during college (in the US) and hopes to get back involved at some point.

    Welcome to the group!



    Hi Aaron, 

    Thank you for the warm welcome. It certainly is a small world! I stay in Aberdeenshire, northwest of Dundee (about 3 hrs away). Dundee is actually in our northern section of the Regional Development League for players under the age of 14.

    I’d definitely encourage your daughter to get involved as player, coach & official. Female players are particularly wanted! As far, as I am aware, most universities have a team (but think more recreational rather than highly competitive like the USA). Most usually compete in the local senior player competitive league (players over the age of 18).

    Dundee also has a very strong club, Madsons. I do believe they are the only one in the city. Their youth teams usually place first in the regional league and fairly highly in national league. I’m sure that she would be enthusiastically welcomed as both a senior player and coach. 

    Officials are like gold dust! The pay by Basketball Scotland is pretty poor which makes me suspect that is a primary reason why there are never enough officials. But senior leagues usually pay better and even then officials are thin on the ground. I’m unsure if she would have to requalify in Scotland or whether her previous qualification would be accepted (remember that we play be FIBA rules). I’d encourage her to investigate more. 

    It’s a shame she is a bit too far to commute to my neck of the woods. If she ever flits to Aberdeen, please have her get in touch! We’d definitely have space for her in our humble club.  If she has any questions, I’m happy for her to get in touch with me directly and do my best to help. ?




    Linnea actually went to a “tryout” when she first arrived at Dundee as a study abroad student.   She said she would have been able to compete well, but academics – and her now husband made time a bit tough to come by that year!

    One of our favorite activities ever in Scotland (4 trips at this point) was the highland games in Braemar,  if I remember correctly in Aberdeenshire.

    I’m not certain she is ready to re-engage yet, but I know she intends to at some point.

    FIBA rules are certainly different, but not too much to adjust to.   


    Hi Aaron,

    I’m sure she would have been very competitive – especially amongst young women as we struggle to attract girls, many either play netball or football. Those who do play tend to have started fairly late as well (most players, boys & girls, here tend to start at about age 9 or older). 

    Whenever Linnea chooses to re-engage, I’m sure that club will count themselves very lucky! And, no, there aren’t a tremendous amount of differences with FIBA rules. 

    So you have been in my neck of the woods! I’m further northwest (if Huntly means anything to you). The Highland games all have their own distinctive flavours according to where they are, ranging from the big ones like Braemar to smaller towns. Last summer was really tough as a good number were cancelled due to flooding from heavy rains. This summer I doubt there will be any held. 

    Next time you travel to Scotland and fancy a wee spot of guest coaching, please let me know! My guys would be thrilled to have an American coach for a special clinic!! ? No pressure… ?

    On 5/15/2020 at 11:00 PM, Aaron Hill said:

    Aberdeen is the closest I have been, but even there it was only a brief drive after visiting Dunnottar Castle.    I will pass along this conversation to my daughter, and the next time we are in Scotland I am all in on the idea of a clinic!   



    Welcome Ruth, we’re so glad you could join our community! Excited for your growth as a coach and the growth of the game in your community and country!! ???????


    Welcome Ruth! Great day to be a Grant and great day for the Key5 Community.

    Excited to get to know you better. I can tell from your original message your heart is strong for the game and strong for making an impact on players through coaching. You will fit in great here.

    Hope you can join us on a live learning this week, either tonight or tomorrow.

    Grow the game,


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