Never get blown out – Only 1 team over the past 25 years has suffered a loss by more than 25 points and gone on to win a championship. Tough teams always give themselves a chance to win.
Set the tone – Tough teams determine how games are played. Tough teams execute and control the tempo.
Always show toughness – When tough teams are down, they do not show frustration. If tough teams are hurt, they do not show pain. The opponent cannot read a tough team.
Are Consistent – Tough teams always show up to play every time they step on the floor. Practice is tougher than games so games become easy.
Respect every opponent – Tough teams understand that every game is important. Tough teams understand that every opponent, no matter what their record or reputation is, can beat them.
Dominate the boards – No team with a negative rebounding margin has won a NCAA Title in the post John Wooden era.
Are identified with toughness – Tough teams play great defense and take pride in it.
Tough teams take charges – Tough teams get on the floor. Tough teams do not turn the ball over. Tough teams believe in the little things.