Now that his time as a Michigan player is over, Novak has started a basketball camp of his own.
The Zack Novak Shooting Academy will open its doors at Dexter High School from July 30 through August 1 and is available for kids in 4th grade through 9th grade. Novak said the idea of running his own basketball camp stems from his positive experiences at camps throughout his early development as a player.
“I went to a lot of camps growing up, so I figured it’d be a good opportunity to give back and kind of return the favor,” Novak said.
The former captain has already completed one camp this summer, in his hometown of Chesterton, Indiana. Enough people got in his ear to do a camp in the Ann Arbor area that he thought it would be a good idea.
The camp will include instruction on a wide array of basketball skills, with a focus on shooting. This should come as no surprise, given Novak’s prowess from beyond the arc as a Wolverine.
“It’s technically a shooting camp. It’s all parts of basketball, but the emphasis is on shooting,” Novak said. “I think that’s kind of where the camp, you know, stands out. The kids really do learn how to shoot properly.”
Related: Find Camp Information Here
The camp will offer far more than just instruction. There will be drills, as well as contests each day with prizes for the winners. There will also be a 3-on-3 league and a championship at the end of camp.
Hosting his own camp is a good way for Novak to spend his remaining time in Ann Arbor before he heads overseas to start his professional basketball career. He is still waiting to sift through any last-minute offers, but in all likelihood Novak will be playing in Zwolle, Holland. It seems to be a great fit — Novak said the team runs the same basic offense as Michigan, and John Beilein had a previous relationship with the coach.
“The coach and Beilein had a relationship. They both run the same stuff. One of Beilein’s players played for him already, from Richmond, so he kind of brought the 2-guard with him, and they run it,” Novak said. “I just talked to the guy, his name’s Scott Unger, that went over there, and he said the coach is real cool and he’ll probably look to you and listen to you if you have suggestions. I mean, I know it inside and out.”
While it’s not a done deal just yet, the team has offered him and Novak is just waiting to see if anything better comes along.
Novak has also been able to make it to some of the open gyms happening periodically at the Player Development Center. There, he’s been able to mix it up with players in the 2012 class and get a feel for their games.
Novak has been impressed by their talent, and is intrigued by what they may be able to do this season. However, he also warned against setting expectations too high for such a young group.
“They’re talented. Just like any other freshman class, they’re going to have their struggles,” Novak said. “I know they’re highly ranked, and everyone’s really excited about them – and it’s warranted, they’re really good players – just like every year, you’ve always got to temper the expectations.”
While it will be different for Novak watching Michigan on his couch in Holland, he’s looking forward to seeing how the new team plays together next year.
“I’m excited to watch. It’s almost like watching your little brother or something. You teach him all you want, then one day he’s going to be better than you. He’s gonna take you outside and whup you good,” Novak said. “Hopefully, that’s what it’s like. Hopefully they go out and have a great year, and hopefully do some things we weren’t able to do. Like I said, it’s a long season and there’s a long way to go. Just approach this season like we approached every season, they’ll be okay.”