Richland Basketball

Hardwood chatter
Crimson's Ghost
Moderator Team
Moderator Team
Posts: 10771
Joined: June 24th, 2011, 10:43 am

Re: Richland Basketball

Post by Crimson's Ghost » July 14th, 2020, 2:06 pm

I’d put it this way, not every great junior high team becomes a great varsity team. But every great varsity team probably was really good in junior high.

theprophet
Assistant Coach
Assistant Coach
Posts: 329
Joined: March 19th, 2014, 8:53 am

Re: Richland Basketball

Post by theprophet » July 14th, 2020, 2:26 pm

Crimson's Ghost wrote:
July 14th, 2020, 2:01 pm
I’m not equating junior high championships to varsity championships. I’m just saying you can definitely tell in a lot of cases when you have a good group or a good player or two at the junior high level.
Fair enough

User avatar
WPIAL~Titan
Official BleacherCoach
Official BleacherCoach
Posts: 3830
Joined: September 5th, 2003, 6:15 pm
Location: Titan Town, PA

Re: Richland Basketball

Post by WPIAL~Titan » July 14th, 2020, 3:57 pm

One thing nobody has mentioned here is that basketball is a very skill oriented sport and practicing/refining fundamentals like passing, dribbling, shooting, cutting, screening, and footwork are critical for growth in the sport.

I watched a kid at our high school (who played major D1 football and was a 4 year starter, now an NFL TE) play for 4 years. I watched another kid who started at safety and punt returner at PSU for 2 years also play varsity basketball for 4 years.

Both were dominant players in middle school because they were athletic, physical presences. Both were moved up to varsity as frosh. Both contributed significantly to the varsity team as frosh.

With that said, both also decided to devote the majority of their time in HS outside of basketball season to football and did very little in the gym, other than maybe 1 team camp in July.

Their basketball skills atrophied from their Frosh year to their senior seasons. They were obviously both very strong and athletic, so they contributed for all 4 years even at the big school level in western PA. I’m not so sure that would’ve happened in a more basketball rich area. Neither player was dominant as they moved through high school. Both struggled at times with ball skills, shooting, and footwork. That was strictly due to the lack of off season skill work. However, both were physical and “got after it” on defense and in terms of rebounding. They always drew tough defensive assignments and were very difficult for often the other team’s best offensive player to go against because they were both really strong and really athletic. You don’t need many skills to play defense, set a good screen, or rebound, just the attitude and passion!

For example, I watched the 6’4” 240 pound kid who is now playing in the NFL absolutely abuse a slender 6’11” kid from Lincoln Park who played at Temple. He pushed him off the block, out of the lane, and went aggressively at him on offense. He threw him around like a rag doll for the 12 minutes that the 6’11” kid was able to stay in the game and play. This resulted in the 6’11” kid getting in serious foul trouble because he was too weak to guard our monster and he finished with maybe 4-6 points and a couple of rebounds for the game.

The 6’11” kid was a mid-major D1 college basketball player. I think he learned a little lesson that day about the importance of strength training in becoming a better basketball player.

Had both of these two kids from our school focused solely on basketball, they could’ve been solid, contributing PSAC level D2 players (think UPJ.) Obviously they chose the correct sport. They are both 2 great young men (now men) who have never forgotten where they’re from. Both are still around (one in the off season.)

As an aside, one if my favorite HS Basketball moments from these two was when the kid who is now an NFL TE missed a dunk he had on a fast break. He came off the right lane and went up and the defender just ran away from him so he wouldn’t get killed...The ball slipped out of his hand and went 8-10 feet above the rim. I think the backboard/rim are still shaking.

Since this is a “Richland” thread, I suspect that Burke was similar to the two guys I describe. However, he was more dominant because he was playing against competition that wasn’t quite what our two guys faced. He was athletic enough to get away with not spending as much time on skills in the off season, although since his dad coached him he likely spent more time at basketball in the off season than most other D1 football kids who play HS basketball. I suspect that Burke could’ve been a good collegiate D2 guard had he focused on basketball. I believe that both of our guys would’ve been 1,000 point scorers if they’d played in the LHAC/lower classes of District 6.
Last edited by WPIAL~Titan on July 14th, 2020, 4:28 pm, edited 6 times in total.
"Those who say it can't be done are being interrupted by those who are doing it."

Author unknown

Manfred
Official BleacherCoach
Official BleacherCoach
Posts: 5344
Joined: August 2nd, 2009, 7:23 pm

Re: Richland Basketball

Post by Manfred » July 14th, 2020, 4:18 pm

Crimson, Until they decide to get religion @ BGU, BMCHS, or BC. Then the deck gets stacked.
The world as we know it underwent a rebirth 11-8-16. Conservatives have made themselves heard!

CCDevil2012
Official BleacherCoach
Official BleacherCoach
Posts: 1044
Joined: August 25th, 2014, 12:12 am

Re: Richland Basketball

Post by CCDevil2012 » July 14th, 2020, 10:46 pm

Crimson's Ghost wrote:
July 14th, 2020, 2:01 pm
I’m not equating junior high championships to varsity championships. I’m just saying you can definitely tell in a lot of cases when you have a good group or a good player or two at the junior high level.
I think you need to keep in mind that some schools constantly bump up their best 8th graders to play 9th grade and even the best 9th graders to play JV. I’ve seen terrible 9th grade teams but 2-3 9th graders that would have been on that team are getting quality time in JV. So it’s hard to predict sometimes.

Crimson's Ghost
Moderator Team
Moderator Team
Posts: 10771
Joined: June 24th, 2011, 10:43 am

Re: Richland Basketball

Post by Crimson's Ghost » July 15th, 2020, 10:01 am

Yea, I think it's more commonplace to call up freshman now than it was 10-15 years ago.

Post Reply