Tonite we are headed to the UT vs. ARK basketball game and it reminds me of a story that happened while I was in high school. Some people … scratch that, almost everyone knows I am from Waco and I went to Waco High. Waco High has a pretty rough reputation, I mean shootings, fights, and stabbings were not out of the norm at my school. But I have a very strong sense of pride of my alma matar. Anyway… so such great athletes as Derrick Johnson, and Kwame Cavil attended my school, and I was and still am good friends with Derrick Johnson’s older brother Dwight. We went to school together from the 5th grade on and their mother was my 6th grade math teacher. So in high school I was on the golf team, well I started each year on the golf team until inevitably, I would get kicked off for one reason or another. So all the kids who were kicked off their sports teams all had PE last period. It was nothing but the worst of the worst… and there was me and my fellow golf buddies who were canned. Basically PE was this… the teacher would call roll at the beginning of class, get a basketball, and let the hoods play until either they got bored and left, or class was over. 9 times out of 10 people would play a game or two and just leave.
Waco High has two gyms, one for the basketball team and one for all the PE classes. Well the basketball team would practice last period as well, and they would always come over and want to play pick up games. During my sophomore year, Lee Wilson, who went on to play at Arkansas with the likes of Corills Williams, Todd Day and the rest of that team that went to the National Championship game in 95, would always want to show off. If I remember correctly he was 7 foot tall and the only basketball player to ever have his number retired at Waco High. So one day I was playing a pick up game with all of the guys and of course I got stuck guarding Lee. So one of his team mates dropped the ball to him down on the low block and he was trying to back me down and hit a shot. So he turns around and tries to take a shot over me… BLOCKED. I threw that shit into the first row. He looked completely stunned and all of the guys started clowning him. Relentlessly. Needless to say Lee was not pleased about getting blocked by a white guy and being made fun of. So they inbound the ball and Lee calls for the ball at the top of the key. I am still guarding him, and of course laughing on the inside. He grabs the ball, holds it in his hands, stares dead in my eyes, drives the lane and dunks it nasty on me. But hey it was worth it. I blocked his shot.
A few years later I saw Lee at Crickets in Waco. This was after a stint for him in Europe playing ball. I went up and said hello to him and I am pretty sure he remembered me.
Waco High is playing for the 4A state championship this Friday nite at the Alamodome. I will be in attendance, cheering my former high school on.