The Mt. Rushmore of Hoopston; the 2023-24 VYPE Basketball Preview Flipbook
How about this focus group poll?
When you think of Great Houston basketball, what is the first name that comes to mind? That really depends on how old you are, right? Are we talking girls or boys?
Having covered high school sports for over 20 years in Hoopston, I feel like I have a pretty good perspective. Let’s do a Mr. Rushmore of boys and girls for the VYPE-era, shall we? Ladies first.
Nimitz legend Brittany Griner has to lead the way. I’ve seen her bring the Aldine Campbell Center to its feet in a playoff game as she flew downcourt with a two-handed slam. Can an entire family count as one? The Ogwumike foursome – Nneka (first pick in WNBA) and Chiney (first pick in WNBA), Olivia (Rice) and Erica (Rice) – are the first family or womens’ basketball on a national level. Barbers Hill’s Charlie Collier was also the No. 1 pick in the WNBA coming out of the University of Texas. The fifth of the Mr. Rushmore is Brianna Turner, who led Manvel to a State Title in 2014 and won an NCAA Title with Notre Dame in 2018. She was drafted No. 11 in the WNBA draft in 2019.
Now that is a list. Let the arguments begin in 3... 2... 1.
How about the boys?
Sterling High’s Clyde Drexler was a little too far back, so let ’s stay more recent day. Willowridge’s TJ Ford, Elsik’s Rashard Lewis and Madison’s Tommy Mason Griffin are still a little before our time.
This is where it gets into a grey area.
It has to start with De’Aaron Fox of Cypress Lakes, who went on to Kentucky and was the No. 5 overall pick by the Sacramento Kings. He is growing into a star in the NBA. Quentin Grimes of College Park makes the monument. Grimes was a McDonald’s All-American, the AAC co-Player of the Year for the University of Houston which went to the NCAA Final Four and was the 25th pick in the NBA Draft in 2021.
Aaron and Andrew Harrison were spectacular twins at Fort Bend Travis, before staring at Kentucky. They won a State Title with the Tigers, before advancing to the NCAA Final Four with the Wildcats.
The last one is tough... VYPE chisels Atascocita star, Carsen Edwards, into the monument. Edwards made Atascocita basketball a super-power during his tenure, before making Purdue relevant in the NCAA Tournament in 2019. He won the Jerry West Award for the top shooting guard in the nation and was a consensus All-American. He was drafted in the second round of the NBA Draft and has bounced around the league, the G League and Europe.
The real question is, who is next?
With that... Welcome to the 2023-24 VYPE Basketball Preview, the guide of the Who’s Who of Hoopston.