(12-9-16) – Spire Academy is located in Geneva, Ohio.

According to the school’s website:

Spire Academy’s basketball training is based on the principles of discipline, teamwork, consistency, leadership, and commitment. These principles, our staff’s commitment, and our complete analysis of every aspect of your game, make it possible to reach your maximum potential on and off the court.

Student-athletes will receive one-on-one individual workouts, dedicated team practices, shooting sessions, evaluations, and video breakdown of their game.

Spire Academy’s basketball staff brings over 80 years of combined playing and coaching experience at the professional, collegiate, and high school level. While many of SPIRE Academy staff’s former players have gone on to play professionally in the NBA and overseas, the most prestigious aspect of the Spire basketball program is the staff’s successful placement of hundreds of athletes into collegiate programs.

Although Spire does play some Ohio schools,  they are not members of the  OHSAA, they can be compared to schools like Florida’s  IMG Academy. Spire schedules  high schools, junior colleges and prep schools during the year. Last season (2015-16)  55 players on their  four post-grad and two high school teams came from 20 countries and 19 states. One of the teams just competed in New England at the Zero Gravity Prep Classic

OHSAA’s Tim Stried:

Yes, our member schools are allowed to play non-member schools. And from what little I know about Spire, it doesn’t sound like it is set up to be an academic institution like what our constitution and bylaws require of our members. A question for Spire could be – does it want to be a member school in the future? If so, they can reach out to the OHSAA to begin that conversation and learn the requirements.

 

Spire’s Director of Basketball Operations Barry Bossman told Crain’s Cleveland Business:

“It’s a little bit of everything. Word of mouth is a big component. Networking with college coaches and agents overseas is another. Networking with AAU coaches, high school coaches — we’re going down every single path to get our brand out there. The recognition is finally coming to fruition.”

Spires’s addition of the tallest High school boys basketball player in the US is 7’7″ (190 lbs)  Romanian  freshman Robert Bobroczky  made news around the US this past week. Bobroczky is on one  Ohio’s SPIRE Institute rosters.  Bobroczky will make his debut most likely in January.

Video Highlights Robert Bobroczky 

Spire Academy is just one of several optins for ‘star’ athletes to compete in, the new ‘process’ looks to be the future of high school sports.  Traditional neighborhood high school athletic teams may become a thing of the past.  You can’t deny the success Spire is now having by placing many of their players into D1 programs and that seems to be the goal that the kids and their parents are hoping to find.

Many of those involved in local high school sports, including high school athletic associations,  are critical of programs like Spire and IMG.  With state-funding of public schools an issue, athletes transferring at will, participation levels falling off in some sports, this new way of getting athletes ready for the next step could become the norm.

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