thesquad

Our 2017 banquet event for the children and families of every1plays has been something we’ve been planning for over a year. On February 2, 2017 every1plays hosted a banquet for parents and children of Team USA to announce the new team name, logo, and to give children their new jerseys for city league play.  We also invited participants and their families that have been attending practices. We all enjoyed a lot of food thanks to the coaches and parents to prepare for the announcement.

For over a year, we discussed plans to change the team name. The Team USA name goes back to when some of the children first started playing organized basketball more than five years ago. Team USA also goes back to the first years of Joshy’s coaching experience. The team USA club was started by a group of coaches at Album Park’s city league when current players Ethan & Adrian started hooping.

usabTeam USA 2012

About a year ago, RBros got together to watch the 90s classic film Above the Rim to share some ideas on changing the team name. That night I asked Coach Joshy, “so what do you think? What do you want to call the team?”  I was also prepared to share my suggestions which I’ve since forgotten because of how cool Joshy’s suggestion was. As we watched Kyle Watson and Shep dismantle Birdie & Motaw’s shootout team in the movie, Coach Joshy shook his head, smiled and said…”Hoop Dreams…”. I replied, “wow, that’s it, say no more!”

joshyhoopdreams
Back in 2008, I took a picture of my brother as we made our way out from the NBA preseason game at the Don Haskins Center. On my FB page I remember titling this shot, “Hoop Dreams” inspired by the Ben Joravsky book turned into a documentary by the same name in the 90s.

Afterwards I reached out to graphic design artist Luis Flores for his assistance on a logo inspired by the shootout uniforms from Above the Rim. After a few emails back and forth Luis sent the final proof and we had the new team logo design ready to go. It would take several months until I’d figure out how we were going to print up the jerseys. From the get go I wanted to make sure that we could provide each participant of every1plays with a free jersey.  Especially for those that had already paid for a Team USAB jersey.  I met with a few folks in town about how to print up the jerseys in a way that resembled the All Star Rookie jerseys that I saw back in February. They had a cold fade leading down into the shorts that I was hoping we could create for the every1plays kids. As time went by, the process seemed a lot more complicated and costly than I imagined.

Fast forward a few months after one of the Scotsdale Cadet city league games and Coach Joshy, Coach Isaiah, myself, and the two Ethans took a ride down to La Estrella Screen Printing and Embroidery on Zaragoza. With the logo on a thumb drive we found out that it would be much cheaper to print t-shirts instead of jerseys. We decided on two colors, black (away color) and beige (home color). With a quote on the cost, it was time to find a sponsor.

Coach Isaiah started going to Reaction Physical Therapy to address some hip tightness and flexibility issues he experienced competing in karate tournaments during middle and high school. A couple of years later he started sessions next door with RXN Athletics training for basketball. Over time we also noticed a few of our participants for every1plays putting in some work at RXN Athletics.  RXN Athletics is a sports performance training center in El Paso who’s slogan is “applying science to your game”. Their philosophy on their website states, “we approach training from the viewpoint that our methodologies and equipment used are either biomechanically sound or the published research supports it and that it is applicable to not just the sport, but also to the individual athlete. Each athlete deserves a qualified professional that can get them to their goals. At RXN Athletics each athlete is coached to ensure that the training is performed correctly and that safety is maximized. All of our coaches hold degrees in the field and professional certifications.”

Because of our history at RXN Athletics, Reaction Therapy, and their connection to some of our kids, it made perfect sense to approach them for sponsorship support. We’re excited to be able to hit the court with their logo branded on the back of our jerseys.

e1phoopdreams
Hoop Dreams t-shirt jerseys (black & beige), logo & sponsorship RXN Athletics

We were able to prepare the jerseys in time for the new year 2017 thanks to La Estrella who also provided assistance on the appearance of the logo and design.  On February 2, 2017, we provided participants with their own Hoop Dreams jersey in both black and beige and shared thoughts on the upcoming city league and future goals for every1plays. Coach Joshy also gave each player resume letters in recognition of their participation and to inspire goals for future hoop whether its with us or other city and school teams.

feb22017hoopdreams
Coach Lee, Coach Isaiah, Coach Joshy, and the squad, plus Lil’ Lucy the First Lady of every1plays

February 2, 2017 was a memorable evening, and like any other day it seems to have passed us as quickly as it arrived. This is to document that moment as we continue to think about ways to provide more opportunities for more children to have access to places in the community where they can learn about the game of basketball and play.  And this goes out to all children, boys and girls regardless of ability or skill. At the end of the day every1plays is about helping parents find those opportunities for their children and doing so in the most cost effective way possible.

Special thanks to everyone mentioned in this write up. We’re hopeful for future ideas and simply the joy children experience playing hoop as they continue to dream about their next standout game, making the school team, playing beyond graduation, and who knows maybe even having the chance to give back to their communities as coaches or professionals of the game.

Lecroy Rhyanes, Jr.
aka Coach Lee
every1plays.org

Every1Plays is a volunteer organization born in Northeast El Paso Texas to promote basketball activity for children ages 8 to 11. Our mission is to introduce children and parents to the game of basketball through a positive coaching approach that is focused on development, education, and the core values of every1plays. The 5 core values include practicing TOGETHER, letting the children PLAY, making sure we’re all LEARNING something, WORKing to the best of our abilities, and respecting each other through the value of FRIENDSHIP. For more information on our group please visit us on social media at Facebook.com/e1p44 and Twitter.com/every1plays. This is also home for our children’s youth league which competes in city league tournaments throughout El Paso County. Our social media includes updates from the coaches and activities that the squad is engaged in! For more information you can reach us at every1plays@gmail.com