Successful Michigan Coach ‘I am resigning because of parents’

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(4-25-17) According to a Daily Press story, Gladstone (Michigan) Clayton Castor, the 2017 U.P. Class ABC Coach of the Year in boys’ basketball, resigned as head coach .

His reasons:

  • Family considerations
  • difficulties launching the summer program
  • issues with the booster club
  • parents

Castor told the Daily Press

“At the end of the day, the reason why I am resigning is because of parents.  I don’t want to deal with them. The last five years I have coached at Gladstone I have given it my life. My time could have been better spent doing other things.”

“I really, really enjoy this. But parents have taken the fun and enjoyment right out of it. Maybe some of this is on me. I just don’t have thick enough skin or the will to put up with it. For that amount of time, it’s just not worth it.”

Castor’s resignation is starting to become the norm in this changing world of high school sports, just winning is not enough.  The issues continue to grow, lack of certified officials and now coaches whose jobs use to be considered ‘part-time’ are now year long and full-time.  Student-athletes continue to change schools in order to be ‘seen’, following AAU coaches to a new school or being recruited by a program at an independent private school.

 

Related story-

 

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NJ Scandal Gives HS Basketball A ‘Black Eye’

(4-14-17) NJ.com has taken an in-depth look at the Paterson Eastside girls and boys basketball programs and the violations that have happened over the past several years with the influx of international students. The entire situation has now turned into a soap opera.

The impact of all of this could change New Jersey High School sports for a long time, it’s a case of winning at all-cost, not just recruiting kids but bringing in international players without proper paperwork.  It’s something that is not good for high school sports.

Details according to NJ.com-

Paterson Eastside

Paterson boys and girls basketball teams have included:

*13 players from Nigeria, Paraguay and Puerto Rico over the past six years.

*The recruitment of those players, many of whom lived with coaches and other district employees, brought the allegations of human trafficking.

Every NJ private school basketball power:

*has at least one African player, including St. Benedict’s Prep, Blair Academy, Roselle Catholic, Pope John, Hudson Catholic, Bergen Catholic and St. Mary’s of Elizabeth.

*This year’s State Tournament of Champions winner and New jersey’s No. 1-ranked team, the Patrick School:

*four international players from South Sudan, Angola and Jamaica.

A state-funded investigation of the issue was paid for by New Jersey tax-payers. The report was authored by former New Jersey Supreme Court Justice John Wallace.  Even the report made some state officials upset, saying it missed the point:

From nj.com:

NJ State Sen. Richard Codey (D-Essex)

“That’s pathetic. It was human trafficking at its worst. They used them for basketball for their own self-interests. It is what it is and it should have been called what it is. And I think the taxpayers of the state or city should ask for a refund.”

Despite the concerns of Codey  on the report, the the Paterson Board of Education just fired Boys Head Coach Juan Griles and his assistant Alberto Maldonado, Gregory Cooper as athletic director, suspended Girls Head Coach Ray Lyde for at least one year as girls team coach and fired part-time secretary Patty Granados from her part-time work in student registration.

Eastside principal says he is 100 percent in support of his fired colleagues

Is the issue resolved?  Not based on the reaction of the report after it was released and that it did not hold the coaches responsible for any of the violations of the state athletic association and school district policies.

After the allegations came out, Eastside school officials decided to  pull out of this year’s state tournament. the Ghosts (yes that’s their mascot) boys basketball team finished the season 17-5, while the girls team was 12-6.

NJ.com stories –

 

Ontario: A Pipeline To D1

OSBA Men’s Final: #1 Orangeville Prep Bears vs. #2 TRC Academy Wolfpack

(4-12-17) Ontario is the ‘hot bed’ of boys high school basketball in Canada. In the past top Canadian players have been heading to the US to play their high school hoops. But those days may becoming to an end, thanks to several key programs in Ontario and others around the country.

This past week, Canada’s version of the McDonald’s All-American game took place in Toronto with the BioSteel All-Canadian game, although the game featured a few Canadian players who compete in the US, the talent still playing in Canada proved a point, there are plenty of good players staying home.

The Ontario Scholastic Basketball Association named their top boys basketball players in the Association this week.  The quality of the players in this group proves the point.

OSBA All Stars
OSBA 1st Team All Stars

Of the five first team members, four are coming to the US next season to play D1 basketball.

  • Howard Washington -Athlete Institute – Syracuse
  • Stefan Smith -Bill Crothers – Vermont
  • Oshae Bissett -Athlete Institute – Syracuse
  • Eliel Nsoseme – TRC Academy – Cincinnati

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The fifth member and the OSBA MVP, Ignas Brazdeikis  , who led Orangeville Prep to the OSBA title tonight,  is in the Class of 2018, but is getting plenty of interest from DI schools.

 

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Programs like Cincinnati are getting serious about looking at Canadian players, like Eliel Nsoseme.

UC associate head coach Larry Davis

“I have a friend who’s an AAU coach in his area in Canada. He called and said there was a kid I should look at. I went and watched him.”

After this past week you can see why Ontario is leading the way in helping Canada to become a leader in producing the future stars on the hardwood.

Ontario product Oshae Brissett was named the BioSteel All-Canadian High School Basketball Player of the Year.

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Nancy Rehm, Her Memory Continues In Border Wars Classic

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Nancy Rehm

February 3rd, 1982

The incident began when Indiana Tech’s Nancy Rehm (20 years old) and her two teammates (Coldwater’s Joan Wenning and  Rhonda Unverferth) were ticketed by a police officer for riding their snowmobiles on Ft. Wayne city streets, so they called Nancy’s dad, Thomas  to come and pick them up. As the three waited, two brothers (Arnold and Mark Mauricio) wearing ski masks approached them and demanded the snowmobiles, but they refused to give into the threats.  That’s when Mark Mauricio fired three shots into a snowbank, the women would back away.  But as Mauricio and his brother sped off in opposite directions, the three players would try and chase  them down. As Rehm  closed in one of the snowmobiles, Mauricio turned and fired, the bullet striking and killing her.

Nancy’s Coach at Bishop Luers, Kirk Kavanaugh,  reflected after the killing took place:

“She was a legend around here. It is like a part of Fort Wayne died.”

Former Coldwater (Ohio) star Joan Wenning Gilliand was a teammate and roommate of Rehm and was a witness to the killing:

Nancy was a hard fought player and a fantastic person to be around on and off the floor. As a player you always knew if you worked hard enough to get open she was going to get you the ball. As a friend she was like a sister who helped me adjust to the freshman year in college. She made her home and family also my home and family.  With that they are still my Indiana family.

On that day, Febuary 3, I relive the situation in my mind which still brings tears and hard to believe that it really happened and wonder what Nancy would be doing now if she were alive.

That night has changed my life to where I have learned to be more aware of my surroundings in the bigger cities when coming from a small community. I have also gained the meaning of how important friendships are and how fast things can change. Dealing with this incident as a freshman really made me grow up and deal with a lot of situations that most freshman don’t expect to do. (like going through a murder trial.. that’s only in the movies :))

Wenning and Unverferth, would both transfer to IPFW the next season.

On April 30, 2017 the annual Nancy Rehm Border Wars Classic Boys and Girls basketball games will be played at the Hutzell Athletic Center on the campus of the University of Saint Francis in Ft. Wayne. The games will feature some of the best Senior players from Northeast Indiana and Northwest Ohio.

The the annual Nancy Rehm Award will be presented to a deserving honoree and is a part of the Classic history.

2012 You Tube Video

 

No one will forget that tragic day, February 3rd, 1982, but thanks to Nancy’s dad Tom Rehm, his family and friends, Nancy’s memory will live on.

The tragic loss of Nancy, a daughter, a friend and a teammate is just another  reminder of our humanity. These games are much more than just winning and losing, but how we handle what comes our way, both the good and the bad.  A senseless killing over a ‘possession’ changed the lives of all involved.  But instead of letting that be the end of the story the Border Wars Classic exemplifies the life of Nancy and now deserving student-athletes can benefit from this event o0n several different levels.

2017 INDIANA GIRLS Roster

Four members of the Homestead Class 4A State Champion team will be featured this season, highlighted by Purdue-bound Karissa McLaughlin.

Canada Celebrates High School Basketball

(4-11-17) Oh Canada! They love their boys high school basketball. Last night at the University of Toronto,  the 3rd Annual BioSteel All Canadian game was played.  A national TV audience, lots of media and the best high school boys basketball players Canada has to offer. The US has the McDonald’s All-American game and Canada now has the BioSteel All Canadian game.

In an offensive shoot-out, Team Red beat Team White 153-135. Co-MVP’s from both teams were named, leading the Red Team to the win was 6’5 Luguentz Dort, who plays at Conrad Academy (Florida), who had 30 points, 12-16 FGs and 2 rebounds.  Orangeville Preps 6’8 Ignas Brazdeikis added 27 points on 12-20 FGs and 6 rebounds, Vermont Academy’s 6’9 Simi Shittu added 21 points 7-9 FGs  and 11 rebounds.

 

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Leading the White Team was 6’10 Australian-born Matur Maker, who plays at the The Tech Academy (Ontario),  who had a team high 25 points. Maker was also the MVP for Team Grey in the Nike BioSteel Future All-Canadians Game held on Sunday, Team Black won that game 110-101.

Jonathan Givony, founder of DraftExpress told sportsnet.ca:

“The novelty is gone. Everyone knows Canadians can really play, it’s been proven over and over again, and there’s a lot more coming.

“[We sent] a scout to the BioSteel … we have to scout Canada just a strongly as we scout the U.S. That’s where it’s at.”

The All-Canadian High School Basketball Player of the Year was announced, 6’9 Oshae Brissett who played for Athlete Institute Prep (Ontario) and is a Syracuse commit.

Highlights of the Week

Shamiel Stevenson-BMO Slam Dunk Competition

Howard Washington Jr.-3-Point Shootout Champion

Surprise Visit

Futures Game

Addison Patterson MVP of Team Black-Nike BioSteel Future All-Canadians Game

Makur Maker MVP-Nike BioSteel Future All-Canadians Game

Boys High School basketball continues to grow and thrive in Canada, including many players yearly heading to the States to play for some of the top high schools and than making a big impact at D1.

Related Stories:

Does HS Basketball Need A National Championship?

From February 2010 ESPN storyJohn Johnson, Director of Communications and Publications for the Michigan High School Athletic Association

“It is not compatible with the mission of high school athletics. What is the essence of high school sports? To educate. It’s about the time of day, and order of importance in the process.

“If we get too hung up on what our athletic teams do athletically as opposed to what our athletic programs do for our kids and do for our schools, then we’re no better than the AAUs and other third parties which promote these things.”

Nothing has changed much since the above ESPN story ‘Debate over national high school championships rages on‘ from 2010 was published.

This weekend the Dick’s National High School Boys and Girls Basketball Championships are being decided. Eight boys teams competed and four girls teams competed, only one public high school competed in the boys tournament.  The Championships are basically a ‘made for TV’ Invitational tournament.

A ‘true’ National Championship in boys and girls basketball is never going to happen, as long as the National Federation Of State High School Associations and it’s member associations are not on board.  Over 50 different associations, lengths of seasons and State tournaments all run on different schedules and end on different days.  State Associations have enough issues (like private vs. public) within their own membership to worry about a National tournament.  By-laws for most states would have to be changed to ‘suit’ each association member. To get 50 state athletic associations to agree on anything this big is just a ‘pipe’ dream.

Does college basketball have just one National Champion? Most of those who want a National HS Basketball Championship want to be like the NCAA DI round of 64 (68).  But I guess we all need to remember this does not include every level of men’s college basketball, there is DII, DIII, the NAIA has two national championships, the NJCAA has three divisions.

So you want a National Championship for High School?  How about this plan that might  build the groundwork for the future.  This past season MaxPreps separated high school boys basketball rankings for teams that compete for state championships as part of recognized governing body (High School Top 25) and those that do not (Independent Top 10) in state association tournaments.

March 20th – MaxPreps Independent Top 10 Boys Basketball Rankings

1. (last week 1) IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.), 26-1
2. (2) La Lumiere (LaPorte, Ind.), 25-1
3. (3) St. Benedict’s Prep (Newark, N.J.), 29-4
4. (4) Montverde Academy (Fla.), 23-4
5. (5) Findlay Prep (Henderson, Nev.), 33-3
6. (6) Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.), 38-4
7. (7) Westtown (Pa.), 32-2
8. (8) Huntington St. Joseph Prep (W. Va.), 26-4
9. (9) Hillcrest Prep (Phoenix, Ariz.), 33-6
10.(NR) Wasatch Academy (Mt. Pleasnat Utah)

Keep an eye on: Prolific Prep Academy (Napa, Calif.), Southwest Christian Academy (Little Rock, Ark.), Sunrise Christian Academy Elite (Bel Aire, Kan.) and Wesley Christian (Allen, Ky.)

This is something that can work and it could include every team that meets the Independent criteria. Independent Schools come from all around the USA, can’t get more national than that can you?  You avoid the hassle of state associations and fighting to get those schools to attend.

Tonight the Dick’s National Basketball Championship game features, La Lumiere and Montverde Academy, both rated in the Independent Top 10 at #2 and #4. Of the eight teams that competed this year six are ranked in the Independents as well, Findlay Prep, IMG Academy, Oak Hill Academy and Wasatch Academy. The six are located in Florida (2), Nevada,  Virginia, Indiana and Utah, that covers a lot of the US and would qualify as a National tournament.

Let this group build a national championship, maybe the NFHS would see the value of a tournament as well in the future. The Independent schools need to get behind the plan, it will work and now their team has a true season ending championship with national TV exposure on ESPN.

What do you think, list your thoughts below in the comments section.

Related stories:

Indiana HS Boys Basketball Player On The Move AGAIN

 

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(3-30-17) Just when you think you’ve heard it all, another wild and crazy transfer keeps making headlines.  This is the story of 6’2 Point Guard Austin Boucher.

Transfer Trail

  • Norwell Middle School – 8th grade
  • Bellmont Middle School – repeated 8th grade (Norwell does not allow students to be held back a grade unless it is due to academic issues.)
  • Ft. Wayne  South Side – Freshman and Sophomore season
  • Ft. Wayne North Side – Start of Junior Season
  • St. James  School (Hagerstown, Md.) – Junior season – late fall until March (left after second trimester finished)
  • Ft. Wayne North Side –  Junior Season (as of this writing)

So how did Boucher end up in the BIG city after living in the smaller communities outside of Ft. Wayne?

His dad Joel told the News-Sentinel:

“He wanted to play in the SAC, he wanted to go prove he could play. We wanted to send him to a diverse school and he wanted to play against high-level competition in the area.”

After his freshman year, he was named to the all-conference team, at South Side.  Boucher told the Indy Star about his first season with the Archers:

“It went very well. I think I probably exceeded some personal expectations. After that first game, everything seemed normal. I felt like I belonged.”

His Sophomore year turned out to be a highlight season, averaging 25 points a game and a record breaking game against Muncie Central when he scored 54 points.

State Tournament – Single-Game Scoring Leaders (40 or more points)

58 – Roy Burris, Washington vs. Paxton, March 4, 1921 (Sectional first round game).
58 – Bill Zeller, Brazil vs. Staunton, March 5, 1915 (Sectional first round game).
57 – Steve Alford, New Castle vs. Indianapolis Broad Ripple, March 19, 1983 (Semi-State semifinal game).
57 – David Hanger, North Newton vs. River Forest, March 2, 1999 (Sectional first round game).
54 – Austin Boucher, Fort Wayne South Side vs. Muncie Central, March 4, 2016 (Sectional semifinal game).

 

Turmoil started after the school year ended when Boucher decided to transfer across town  to rival North Side.  However; South Side school officials would not sign-off on the transfer and the IHSAA would rule him ineligible for varsity play at North Side.

IHSAA Commissioner Bobby Cox ruled:

“There are several provisions under Rule 19-6.1 (regarding eligibility and transfer) where your son might have achieved full eligibility under these circumstances however as I review the transfer report information, your son meets none of these qualifiers.”

That’s when Boucher and his parents decided to remove him from North Side in the late fall and have him transfer to a nationally regarded prep school in Maryland, St. James School. The Saints who play some of the top-ranked schools in country finished 12-14.  Boucher played in all 26 games, scoring 209 points (8.0 average), 122 rebounds (4.7 average) and 88 assists (3.4 average).  Just recently, as the second trimester ended, Boucher withdrew and is now enrolled and back to finish his Junior year at North Side.

Saints assistant coach Don Shopland told the Herald Mail after a recent game:

“(Austin) is a pure competitor. We’ve been playing him both behind the point and in the two spot. He was all about passion tonight.”

 

If Boucher remains with the Legends, this year’s Indiana Class 4A runner-ups, his teammates will be Keion Brooks Jr., who is getting lots of looks and many consider one of the top prospects in the class of 2019  and  Brandan Johnson, who will be a Senior next season.  If the chemostry is right it could bring a State Champion to the Summit City.

Although this situation seems out of the norm, it’s not, more a more student-athletes are making changes to play at the ‘right situation’.  Time will tell if it is a good thing for high school sports and the future of these athletes.

Boucher’s Coach at South Side Just Resigned:

Rising Stars Classic Returning To Rock Valley College

 

Rock Valley College will again host the 2017 Rising Stars Classic on Saturday, April 8th, 2017, in the Physical Education Center on RVC’s main campus (3301 North Mulford Road, Rockford).

The Rising Stars Classic features the best of the best in high school basketball in the Stateline area head to head. Players and coaches were selected by a media panel of writers and broadcasters. The panel decided on players from the around the Stateline are, including  Winnebago, Boone, Ogle, and Stevenson Counties or the NIC-10, Big North West, and the NUIC conferences.

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Four Byron Tigers of the two-time IHSA 2A Champions will represent the All-Area team, Lexi DeVries, Bailey Burrows, Paige Holloway and Sarah Hopkins.  Arkansas bound Macy Weaver, a 1st team 3A All-State player from Stillman Valley will join the All-Area team.

NIC 10 Champion Boylan Titans will have Sarah Welsh highlighting the All NIC 10 team line-up.

The NIC 10 stars will be coached by East’s LA Malone and the All-Area team by Bobby Mellon of Stillman Valley.

Game 1 at 6:00pm: NIC-10 Girls vs. All-Area Girls

NIC-10 Girls All-Area Girls
Madilyn Hecox (East) Macy Weaver (Stillman Valley)
Mardaeja Cross (East) Lexi DeVries (Byron)
Victoria Malone (East) Bailey Burrows (Byron)
Sarah Welsh (Boylan) Paige Holloway (Byron)
Megan Matuska (Hononegah) Sarah Hopkins (Byron)
Crystal Mathis (Guilford) Kailyn Strawbridge (Rockford Lutheran)
Kaleia Montiero (Guilford) Ashlei Lopez (Rockford Lutheran)
Elizabeth Bankole (Jefferson) Abby Ponder (Pecatonica)
Neve Yerk (Belvidere) Julie Galauner (Genoa Kingston)
Quavashia Avery (Freeport) Jesica Nay (Genoa Kingston)
Coaches:
LA Malone (East)
Coaches:
Bobby Mellon (Stillman Valley)

In the boys game, the NIC 10 stars will be led by two-time Conference  MVP and Air Force commit Zach Couper.  On the All-Area team Rockford Lutheran’s Josh Streeter and Rockford Christian’s Matt Glowgoski will highlight the roster.

The NIC 10 team will be coach by Boylan’s Brett McAllister and the Area stars by Rockford Christian’s Isaiah Johnson.

Game 2 at 8:00pm: NIC-10 Boys vs. All-Area Boys

NIC-10 Boys All-Area Boys
Zach Couper (Boylan) Matt Glowgoski (Rockford Christian)
Kevin Diemer (Boylan) Jackson Foltz (Rockford Christian)
Max Miller (Hononegah) Josh Streeter (Rockford Lutheran)
Josh Donaldson (Hononegah) Luke Harper (Rockford Lutheran)
Allen White III (Harlem) Patrick Gustafson (Freeport Aquin)
Zeke Vandenburgh (Freeport) Brighton Haverland (Easton)
Charles Burnell (East) Michael Mitchell (DeKalb)
Austin Revolinski (Belvidere) Trent Snodgrass (Byron)
Nick Phillips (Guilford) Isaiah Whitehead (Winnebago)
Tenoah Tatum (Auburn) Dillon Hagstrom (South Beloit)
Coaches:

Brett McAllister (Boylan)

Coaches:

Isaiah Johnson (Rockford Christian)

Tickets for the event are $8 for adults and $5 for students and senior citizens and can be purchased at the door.

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St. Georges’ Jaguars Win Bahamas Boys Basketball National Title

Sports Unit Director for the Ministry of Education Evon Wisdom told the Nassau Guardian:

“I am almost speechless now because not only is this a storybook ending but everything went the way I thought it would go and that is what the nationals is about. I only see great, great, great things for this.”

Most Valuable Player (MVP) Howard Hinzey
Most Valuable Player (MVP) Howard Hinzey – thanks to – http://www.grandbahamasports.com

(3-25-17) The St. Georges’ Jaguars won the 2nd annual Bahamas National High School Basketball Championship on March 6th.  The Jaguars upset #1 seed Tabernacle 61-53 to pick up the title.

The Jaguars’ Howard Hinzey led the way with a double-double, 16 points and 13 rebounds, with that effort he was named the Tournament MVP. Hinzey will continue his career in college for Pensacola State College next season.

Four other Jaguars were named to the All-Tournament team, Mateo King, Davonte Jennings, Ahmad Harvey and Kyle Smith.

All-Tournament Team

  • Domini Bridgewater (Anatol Rodgers) -(17 pts and 4 assists a game)
  • Franco Miller (Tabernacle)
  • Justin Burrows (St. Augustine’s) (11 rebounds a game)
  • Adam Johnson (Jordan Prince William)
  • Kenneth Johnson (Teleos)
  • Delano Dean (Eight Mile Rock)
  • AcKeem Hanna (Jack Hayward) – alma mater of Buddy Hield

Other news from the tournament

Jaguars Top Tabernacle Falcons 61-53 To Claim Championship

Top High School Basketball Players In Spotlight

  • Family Islands Division Champion Gateway Academy
  • Family Island Division MVP – Gateway’s Bradley Lightbourne
  • National Girls Champion – Jordan Prince William
  • Latavia Brennen of  CI Gibson averaged 18 points and 18 rebounds per game for the Rattlers and was named the tournament MVP.

     

Ohio Mr. Basketball Named, Ahrens, Goodwin and Linder Finalist

 

 

Westerville South’s Kaleb Wesson (6’10 Senior) was named Ohio’s AP Mr. Basketball, Wesson is committed to play at Ohio State next season with his older brother Andre, who will be a Sophomore next season for the Buckeyes. Wesson averaged a double-double this season with 22.4 points and 10.9 rebounds per game, shooting 67 percent from the floor.

Just behind Wesson is Massillon Jackson Senior Kyle Young, a Butler commit, averaged 18.1 points per game while leading Jackson to a spot in the Division I state semifinals this weekend in Columbus, was second.

Wesson picked up four of the seven first-place votes placed by the district chairmen
for Mr. Basketball. Young (Massillon Jackson) had two first place vote and Versailles (Midwest Athletic Conference)  Junior Justin Ahrens  had the final first place vote.

Upper Arlington’s Dane Goodwin, the son of former St. Marys star Damon,  was  a finalist. Wayne Trace and University of Findlay bound Ethan Linder, along with  Dwayne Cohill (Parma Heights Holy Name)  and Parker Black (Byesville Meadowbrook) finished the list of those players on the ballot.

Goodwin and Ahrens, who are both Juniors, have both already committed to Ohio State and will join Wesson in 2018.

Lima Senior’s Xavier Simpson was the 2016 Ohio Mr. Basketball and is a member of this year’s Michigan State team that is making a run in the NCAA’s.