Rebels use play-day to prepare for round ball season
By Pam Horne, Managing Editor
Franklin High School basketball hosted the inaugural Rebel play day Saturday, with top teams from throughout the state competing in the daylong event.
South Side High School of Jackson, which narrowly lost the 2013 state championship to CPA, left the event as the top team.
“Anytime you can go into the state of Tennessee and have a nice facility like this and have teams of this caliber play together, it is great,” winning coach DaMon Fuller said, adding that FHS has made a good choice in selecting new Head Boys Basketball Coach Jamie Wilson to lead the Rebel program.
“I think he’s the right man for the situation here. I think the community is going to support him and they will be proud of him.”
The Rebels and Centennial High School’s Cougars both participated in the basketball play-day exhibition, along with Hardeman County’s Bolivar Central High School, Knoxville’s Bearden High, Harpeth High School in Cheatham County, Kenwood High School and Siegel High School.
Organized by Wilson, along with Athletic Director Toby Ruth, this was the first basketball preseason event of its kind held at the school.
Wilson, who just came on board this summer as head coach, said he has high expectations for his new team.
“It’s my goal for our players to see these other teams and to know what it is going to take if they really want to reach the top pinnacle,” said Wilson, who has a solid reputation for bringing together coaches and players for a day of rapid pace ball.
He has spent the summer working with the varsity players to prepare for a challenging season in District 11-AAA basketball.
“I wanted to introduce them to an intensity of basketball that they’re not used to seeing or playing,” Wilson said.
“There are six teams here today who will compete to get to the state tournament in their respective regions…this is the goal everyone has—to go to state. I want them to know what it takes to get there.”
Last week, Siegel coach Ben Dotson held a similar event in Murfreesboro.
Though the two schools will not face off in this season’s schedule, the continued exposure to one another’s programs is a positive experience, said Dotson, who took a friendly dig at Wilson, his good friend and former colleague, when asked how he thought Franklin’s play-day scored against other schools.
“I’m biased, but I’d say it was the second best run play-day just because ours was last week,” he quipped.
Dotson, who coached with Wilson many years ago at Martin Methodist College, said the opportunity for players to watch each other’s game is invaluable.
“It’s a good adjustment because you get the quality of teams and you get a chance to study the teams,” Dotson said.
The event, which was open to the public, drew fans, parents and players with all door proceeds benefiting the Rebels basketball program.
Posted on: 11/11/2013