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The Drive to Win
A Reading Comprehension Passage by Common Core Texts

In my experience as a high school basketball coach, there are two kinds of players that create a winning team: players with talent and players with drive. While I’ll readily take either on my team, if I am able to choose, I’ll pick the player with drive every time.

I can spot talented players from a mile away. They usually walk onto the court with an air of confidence. They were the best on their middle school team, and they expect to be the best on their high school team too.

Players with drive are harder to spot. You need to test them to find out what they’re made of. Put a player with drive in a challenging situation, and they will work twice as hard to prove themselves. A player without drive will crack under the pressure, storming off the court in a huff.

But what does a talented player do when put into a challenging situation? Some show that they have drive too, and won’t give up easily. But more often than not, the talented player will be the first to lose heart and give up. That reveals the problem with talent. Because talent isn’t earned, talented players often aren’t as hardworking. They expect things to always come easily.

Give me a team with drive, and I’ll teach them to beat any competitor. But give me a team without it, and there is no amount of good coaching that will turn them into winners, no matter how talented. That is why I’ll choose a player with drive over a player with talent every time.

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