This week’s column features five outstanding individuals who have made their communities proud. They include a prep football star that won’t have to deal with recruiting this fall, three former prep stars who are giving back to youth, and a former pro player with Minnesota ties who continues to provide leadership opportunities for youth through athletics.
Not only did Cretin Derham Hall defensive end JASHON CORNELL recently announce that he would attend Ohio State University on a football scholarship, but the senior also plans to graduate in December and enroll in January. Cornell was the top-ranked junior nationally last season and is currently among the top 20 prospects in the country.
KHALID EL-AMIN, the point guard who helped Minneapolis North capture three state boys’ basketball championships and later led the University of Connecticut to a national title in 1999, recently held his annual camp for youth grades 3-8 at his alma mater. Continue Reading →
Since 1975, 42 individuals in 40 years have been recognized as the state’s best players by being named Mr. Basketball (the honor was shared in 1979 and 1998). Of the 42 winners, 15 (36 percent) are African Americans. Here they are with a brief synopsis of their high school accomplishments. GREG DOWNING (Duluth Central, 1979): The 6’-3” guard led the Trojans to the Class AA state crown his senior year. He shared the award with Randy Bruer of Lake City. Continue Reading →
A Minnesota prep basketball player representing the state in the McDonald’s All-American game, featuring the nation’s top players, is rare. That changed when Apple Valley’s TYUS JONES, REID TRAVIS of DeLaSalle, and Findlay Prep’s RASHAD VAUGHN represented Minnesota in the annual classic last week with the East (with Travis and Vaughn) defeating the West (with Jones) 105-102 before a capacity crowd at the United Center in Chicago, doing the state proud in the process. Jones, a 6’-1” Duke University signee who has won about every prep basketball award the state has to offer, scored seven points and dished out 10 assists. He led Apple Valley to the Class 4A state title last season and was this year’s Mr. Basketball and Metro Player of the Year. Travis, a 6’-8” forward headed to Stanford, scored eight points and grabbed five rebounds for the winners. Continue Reading →
KHALID EL-AMIN, BRODERICK POWELL, KAMMRON TAYLOR and MICHAEL CONTRERAS provided metro-area youth with opportunities to learn about leadership and teamwork last week through basketball. El-Amin, who led Minneapolis North to a three-peat of state championships 1995-97 before leading the University of Connecticut to the NCAA title in 1999, held his annual co-ed basketball camp for grades 4-8 at his alma mater. Powell, the coach who led the Park Center boys’ basketball team to a runner-up Class 4A boys’ finish last March, facilitated his fourth annual camp for grades K-8. The Flint, Michigan native starred at Northwestern High School before completing his collegiate career at the University of North Dakota. Taylor and Contreras teamed up to hold a co-ed basketball camp for grades 4-11 at Brooklyn Center. Continue Reading →
The 20th Annual Inner City All-Star Classic rosters are set. The event, to be held Sunday, June 16 at Schoenecker Arena on the campus of the University of St. Thomas, features some of the top local graduating boys’ and girls’ basketball players in the metro area.
Girls’ Rosters (tip-off at 3 pm)
Team Faith, coached by FAITH JOHNSON-PATTERSON (DeLaSalle): CHANEL SCOTT (St. Paul Johnson); TAYLOR CUNNINGHAM (St. Continue Reading →
The 20th Annual Inner City All-Star Classic is set for Sunday, June 16 on the campus of the University of St. Thomas. The game features some of the top senior girls’ and boys’ basketball players of color in the metro area. The idea started as a one-game protest. Minneapolis Washburn, with AARON BOONE, BYRON SUTTLES, AKEEM CARPENTER, ERIC MINEA and ANDRAE PATTERSON, had just captured the 1994 Class AA title. Continue Reading →
ROYCE WHITE (DeLaSalle/Hopkins): The first-round NBA draft choice from Iowa State is in Las Vegas playing for the Houston Rockets. KAMMRON TAYLOR (Minneapolis North): The 6-2 guard, who led Minneapolis North to the 2003 Class 4A state boys’ basketball title before going on to star at the University of Wisconsin, is playing for the Minnesota Timberwolves in the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas. JORDAN TAYLOR (Benilde-St. Margaret’s): The 6-1 guard from the University of Wisconsin is playing for the Atlanta Hawks in the NBA summer league. LAMONT MACK (St. Continue Reading →
There are only 25 Blacks listed on the Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) list of state boys’ and girls’ basketball tournament head coaches. Louis Boone, who coached Washburn to the 1994 state boys’ title, is one of 17 Black coaches who have appeared in the 100-year history of state tourneys. Winning the tough-from-top-to-bottom Minneapolis City Conference along the way during that championship season was a great preparation for Washburn’s ultimate state championship run, he admits. “Some of our biggest battles were right in the city,” he remembers. His squad finished 27-1. Continue Reading →
By James L. Stroud, Jr.
The Clyde Turner Basketball Camps came to North Minneapolis’ Farview Park Community Center and offered a free five-day Kwanzaa basketball camp from December 26 to December 30 for boys and girls ages 8-15. Clyde Turner says, “Call it the spirit or say it was inspired by Jesus Christ, but we wanted to give the kids something to do while they where out of school during the holidays and give the parents a break by offering it for free.”
Turner further says that he picked North Minneapolis because of the recent reports of violence caused by and directed toward that community’s youth. “It was an opportunity to not only give back, but also to give the youth something fun, safe, positive and educational to do with their time.”
For the last 27 years, the Clyde Turner Educational Basketball Camps (CTEBC) have offered boys and girls between the ages of nine through 17 a fun and challenging experience of learning the fundamentals of basketball. CTEBC’s mission is to provide a program that meets the personal developmental needs of young people in the Metropolitan area. The camps are usually held during the summer, and parents expect to pay an entry fee. Continue Reading →