Monday, October 27, 2008

Bryan HS Boys Preview

From left to right:
2009 Cory Burleson
2009 Terrance Wilbert
2012 J.Mychal Reese (Shown here in nis ESPN shoot as a 7th grader.

Spoke to Vikings Head Man John Reese on the phone this evening about this upcoming year at Bryan HS. There is no doubt going to be some differences this season as he lost 6'7" Rayland Robinson and three year starter PG Allyn Cooks both who signed with Temple College. Cooks was an extremely late qualifier so expect him to be gone D-1 after one year at Temple JC. He was a great leader and competitor, it's hard to replace that kind of player.

The difference this year is that Big Reese loses even Bigger 6'10" Chris Jones. CJ hasn't scored a bucket in 15 years but the loyal and highly qualified assistant Coach will no longer be Coach Reese's right hand man in practice and on the bench, as he's taken the Head Coaching job at Bryan's new HS, Bryan Rudder.

Rudder HS will compete this year at the 3A level.

Several of the players that could have been a key part of the Bryan HS program have opted to go to the new high school and get an earlier opportunity to play, so I do not expect the Vikings to have the depth of years past. Don't expect too much to change though as Coach Reese says, "We'll be pressing as soon as we get off the bus."

The cupboard isn't bare though with 2009 6'4" Terrance Wilbert who played key minutes last year returning for his senior campaign. Wilbert plays tough D and can get after it in transition as well as having a nice mid range face up game. 2009 F Cory Burleson also brings athleticism and toughness to the undersized Vikings. As always, their lack of height will be neutralized by their high tempo designed to wear bigger teams out.

Reese is modest/cautious in speaking about his biggest asset. After what seems like 20 years, Coach Reese has an opportunity for the next 4 seasons to coach his son, J. Mychal at the high school level. J. Mike has been the most written and talked about schoolboy player on the planet over the last 5 years. As the concensus number one PLAYER IN THE COUNTRY over that time this youngster and his family have been scrutinized in every way possible. A 5 page spread in ESPN The Magazine, appearances on ESPN's Outside The Lines, and a variety of other media exposure has put a target on this kid's back for what seems like forever.

A credit to Coach Reese, his wife Celeste and family, J. Mychal keeps a humble, hard working no nonsense approach to his basketball world and is treated like any "ordinary kid" at home so that there is no opportunity to get a big head. Don't expect a levelling out of his talent. Expect Bryan HS games to be full of D-1 coaches, and why not...they were there for his Middle School games! That's right, his MS games were moved to Bryan HS just to accommodate the crowds. As an 8th grader young Reese was offered by Arizona and Texas A&M.

Bryan will be tough as usual, but Killeen Ellison, Harker Heights, A&M Consolidated and possibly Temple will all have something to say about it in District 12-5A.