I Used to Love Him: From a Player’s to a Coach’s Perspective Part I


Photo Credit: atownrebels.com

Before Kobe ever started exposing The Game, I already had these feelings. They started years ago but were rekindled September 2015 when I saw the “Brown Sugar” film at least three times (the third times a charm, right?). Little did I know how it foreshadowed what I’ve been inspired to write today. I’m Sidney Shaw writing the pages to my book of life that I’ve lived and I’m currently living… mastering my thoughts, piecing them together to create a master piece. The Game is my Dre and I’ve learned to rhyme my own verses without his Beats. #CatchThat

I’d had an off and on situation-ship with The Game for 15 years before I decided to walk away. I realized it was unhealthy for me mentally, physically and spiritually. Then, last September, I re-encountered The Game. Not to my surprise, but he now had teenage daughters – I met him when I was young so I figured he was creeping behind my back – who he spent a lot of time with, showing them love and attention. Women love to see men interacting with their daughters. It took me back to why I fell in love with The Game in the first place. I was experiencing that “Newness” like Musiq SoulChild because “everything is cool when love is all brand new, you learning me and  I’m learning you.” The Game is so smooth like Kem because before I knew it, I was asking myself “how did he find his way back in my life?”

I had just graduated with my master’s in Communication and Information Sciences from The University of Alabama in August 2015. I was doing my due-diligence networking and launching my career, but I couldn’t trade God’s timing for my deadline. So, while I was going through my “waiting” period, I knew the best way to get my mind off myself was to help someone else. I reached out to a former high school teammate and good friend of mine (Coach T) who was the head coach of the girls basketball team at Rambling Middle School. Basketball season was about to tip-off so I figured she wouldn’t mind some extra help with tryouts and practice. It gave me something to do for two hours of my day. During this time, I saw the love The Game’s daughters had for him and their liking for me because of my past relationship with him. Knowing my rough history with him, I can’t believe Coach T still allowed me to get emotionally attached to his daughters (some friend, huh? Lol). Mainly because of his daughters, I fell back in love with him.

Some short time later, T revealed to me that she had a job offer in another state and that she planned to take it as long as everything was cleared. Since things weren’t set in stone, she hadn’t told the team yet, so she had to continue as if she was going to be there for the season. I was happy for T. On the other hand, I thought it was bad timing for her to leave after we had gone through tryouts, were practicing and the season was about to start. Not to mention, the team went undefeated and won its league championship the year before and had a strong chance to repeat. But, I couldn’t be upset with T for wanting to move on with her life.  Read More

Huffman Hosts Annual MLK Viking Classic


Photo credit: Huffman Vikings

Huffman High School’s basketball program will host its annual MLK Viking Classic Saturday. Fourteen high school and six middle school teams representing Alabama and Georgia will compete in the one-day event.

Instead of a traditional tournament, where teams play multiple games, each team will play in a single game. The Classic is designed for top teams and players from different states to have the opportunity to compete on one, large platform.

In a press release, Huffman High School Principal John Lyons Jr. said the showcase will be an exciting day of basketball featuring teams that don’t typically compete, and it will give them the opportunity to develop new skills and strategies. Read More

Woodlawn: The Triumph of Tony Nathan

Before Bo Jackson, one of Birmingham’s first African American football stars was Tony Nathan.

The All-American running back’s rise to stardom during his junior season in 1973, along with the arrival of Head Coach Tandy Gerelds in 1971, led to the Woodlawn Colonels serving as catalysts for change and garnering crowds of thousands for game nights.

The 2015 “Woodlawn” documents Nathan’s struggle to balance his athletic skills and faith while battling racial anxiety on and off the field. The film also highlights the rivalry between the former Banks High School and Woodlawn High School. Many of the former Banks and Woodlawn players went on to play college football at SEC schools (mainly Alabama and Auburn) and professionally in the NFL.

But, one of Woodlawn’s most prominent alums is Bobby Bowden, who led Florida State to two national championships in the midst of becoming the winningest coach in college football history. Read More

“Coaches Got Game Too” Highlights

Read more in-depth analysis of the game here: http://wp.me/p4cFCW-iV



In Tanner’s Words: The Journey to Playing Professional Basketball Part II


Photocredit: trackemtigers.com

It’s no secret that most hoop dreams don’t come true. But for Tyrese Tanner, she arrived, she saw and she conquered everything she has envisioned doing.

Like many other female basketball players, her dream was to play in the WNBA when she was younger, but as she grew older her vision changed.
But, not before playing for one of Alabama’s most elite AAU basketball clubs in the AL Twisters and top high school girls’ programs in Hoover High School where she was a standout.
As a 6-foot-1 forward, Tanner finished high school as the No. 2 Super Senior in the state and signed with Auburn University.

“I chose Auburn because it’s a family oriented university. The people around campus are whole-hearted and welcoming. I also didn’t want to travel too far from home. I was far enough to where I had a little freedom, but close enough to get home if there was an emergency.”

While at AU, Tanner had an impressive four-your stint. During her early years on campus, she worked to diversify her game. She used her size and length to her advantage. Many post players in the SEC were taller than her, so she could put the ball on the floor to blow by them and use her size to post smaller guards. These attributes along with the ability to shoot the deep ball, make free throws, pass and rebound, block shots, jump passing lanes for steals and run the floor like a track star blossomed Tanner into a hot commodity to professional scouts. Read More

“Coaches Got Game Too” Recap


Photo credits: Midfield Patriots Basketball

Some of the finest Birmingham Metro Area high school basketball coaches showed up and showed out for the first ever “Coaches Got Game Too” basketball game.

The main goal was to raise funds for Midfield High School’s basketball programs. Pulling in a nice crowd, the event did just that and Midfield boys head coach and sponsor Darrell Barber says he plans to make the game an annual event. http://wp.me/p4cFCW-hR

Ironically, the game was held on the same day as the first ever Triumph Awards that aired on TV One. During the show, rapper T.I. performed a spoken word piece that concluded with the words, “united we stand.” The Triumph Awards’ sole purpose was to honor those who have positively impacted their communities and industries. In the same way, one of the intentions of the basketball game was to unite high school coaches in the BMA and show that they could come together for a great cause, because just as the Swahili proverb says, “unity is strength and and division is weakness.” Read More

Mustangs Looking to Make Playoffs for First Time in 16 Years


Photo credit: Jackson Olin Mustangs

The Jackson Olin High School football team hasn’t made the playoffs since 1999, but the Mustangs are hoping to turn things around this season.

Currently holding a record of 3-3, the Mustangs are only two wins away from exceeding last season’s win column. However, anything less than making it to the playoffs and competing for a championship is a letdown for J.O.

Offensive Line Coach Terrence Swift believes this year will be a breakthrough season for the team.

“The program has evolved over the years and the offensive line is improving week by week. I’m proud of the guys for working hard and I believe we’re ready to take things to the next level and make it to the playoffs,” Swift says.

J.O. has seen strides of improvement since head coach Tim Vakakes took over three years ago. Read More

Alabama Prep Sports Academy Working to Keep Student-Athletes’ Dreams Alive


Photo credit: apsabearcats,org

With a goal of bridging the gap between academics and athletics, the Alabama Prep Sports Academy provides an option that many parents and student-athletes don’t know is available to them.

Located in Calera, Ala., APSA is a post-graduate, academic-athletic program for students who want to continue their journey to earning an athletic scholarship to an accredited four-year institution. Many student-athletes choose to attend junior college when they don’t meet certain grade point averages, SAT or ACT scores, but athletes can achieve these goals through a post-graduate program without losing NCAA eligibility.

Through APSA, athletes have the opportunity to be exposed to a college-like academic program while competing at a college level in games against Division III, National Athletic Intercollegiate Association (NAIA) and community colleges, and other prep schools. Student-Athletes’ eligibility isn’t affected because they are not considered full-time students at APSA, only taking SAT and ACT prep courses and basic courses to receive some college credit. Most students are enrolled in the post-graduate program six months or longer.

However, not every student pursues a post-graduate program to meet certain qualifications or gain college credit. Some students may want to further develop as an athlete, gain more exposure at a higher level of competition, or maybe unsatisfied with their chosen college following high school. Read More

Midfield Boys Basketball Hosts First Ever “Coaches Got Game Too” All-Star Game

Midfield High School’s boys basketball program is hosting the first ever “Coaches Got Game Too” All-Star basketball game October 3.

The game will be held at Midfield’s gymnasium and will feature high school basketball coaches in the Birmingham Metro Area. Midfield’s head boys coach Darrell Barber will serve as the Home team’s captain, while Midfield’s head girls coach Charles Thomas will serve as the Away team’s captain.

Serving as the Home team’s head coach is also Wenonah High School girls head coach and three-time state champion Emmanuel Bell. He leads the way for a star-studded squad:
Read More

Alabama Heat Elite Gear Up for Fall Finale Showcase

Heat Elite

Photo credit: Alabama Heat Elite

The Alabama Heat Elite AAU girls  basketball club is heading to Power Springs, Ga. for the Fall Finale Showcase.

The tournament will be held at McEacherm High School and serves as the last evaluation period for NCAA coaches before high school basketball tips off.

During July, the Heat played in a series of tournaments across the Southeast, and the girls’ performance improved at each showcase. According to freshman team head coach Steve Ward, his players finished 1-3 in the 10th-grade gold division at the Super Showcase in Orlando, Fla., the Sweet 16 at the Battle of the Boro in Franklin, Tenn., the Elite 8 at the Basketball on the Bayou in New Orleans, La., and were runners-up at the Garden City Summer Final in Augusta, Ga. In its first year of inception, the sophomore team also showed signs of progression.  https://byoungncompany.com/2015/07/03/alabama-heat-e…super-showcase/ Read More

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