Making the cut in life

By Raeshawn Wall
YO: Durham Intern
The Durham VOICE

I’m a sophomore at C.E. Jordan High School and have lived in Durham my whole life.

One thing I’m into is sports, mainly basketball, so I decided to share with the Durham VOICE my story about open gym at my school.

Raeshawn Wall

Open gym is when people who were on the basketball team last year or people who want to try out this year come out to show off skills to friends and coaches.

This time about thirty people came to the open gym.

When it first starts all you will hear are people talking and coaches calling names to check who has had physicals. If you don’t have one you wont be able to play at the open gym.

At my physical, by the way, the doctor gave me a clean bill of health. I was ready.

Before the sneakers start squeaking on the gym floor, the team leader always asks “who’s your man,” or in other words who are you guarding. It’s a really good thing for players to come because if you don’t play in front of coaches before the tryouts, you most likely will become nervous when you do have to play in front of the coaches.

The reason you don’t want to be nervous is because you need to play natural. You want to play naturally so you can play your best and the coaches love players like that.

I think coaches love players who try their best at everything they do — on the court and in class. My brother, Robert Fuller, is a college basketball coach at Ferrum College in the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia.

“A lot of players can’t get into the college they want to because of their grades their first year or two,” he says.

As a sophomore, he tells me that I shouldn’t joke around my first two years of school. Even if you work hard enough your last two years of high school it might not be enough to get you where you want to be.

I’ve learned a lot from open gym and my brother. He taught me everything about basketball. Open gym teaches you how to work with teammates and my brother teaches me about life. He really means the world to me, I just never told him.

Basketball and life are alike because in both you need a playbook or a plan. You also need to know how to work with people and communicate.

If you don’t communicate with your teammates when you are on defense you will most likely let the other team score.  If you don’t communicate with people in the community that’s when everything will start going wrong between neighbors.

So I think people who want to join the basketball team should go to the open gym workouts. This way they can get the feel of how high school basketball really is.  In the same way, I think people need to get out in the community to feel how it really is.

I believe if we want a better community we got to communicate with each other.