It’s Monday morning at the Assembly Center. GSU head women’s basketball coach Donnita Drain-Rogers is teaching the fundamentals of basketball to a group of young girls. But it’s not her basketball team; their season does not start until October. This is Tiger Tots basketball camp.Drain-Rogers, along with her coaching staff, is hosting the inaugural Tiger Tots basketball camp.
The 4- to 6-year-olds attending the camp seemed to be full of energy and enthusiasm and were ready to learn the fundamentals of basketball.
“We just want to make it fun because it’s their first introduction to basketball,” said Drain-Rogers
“We want to expose them to the fundamentals of basketball, court awareness, baselines, free-throw lines, passing, shooting, and how to play defense.”
Assistant coach Tony Greene worked closely with the girls on how to play defense correctly.
During the first exercise of the day, Greene yelled, ” Stance” and ” Big Step,” while the girls repeated his words.
What Greene means by stance is, in order to play defense, you must be in a good solid stance with a good base.
Big step means that you must move your feet when you play defense.
Coach Teneisha McKinney worked on teaching the girls how to improve their dribbling. They dribbled the basketball with both hands, through their legs and while lying on the floor. Some of the more advanced girls dribbled the basketball with their left hand as McKinney held their right hand.
At the end of this drill, Drain-Rogers gave the girls a homework assignment. Their assignment was to go home and brush their teeth with left hand. The purpose of this assignment was to get the girls accustomed to using their left hand.
The last activity of the camp, was a 3-on-3 basketball game against the Jolly Ranchers and the Snickers.
Even though no score was taken in the game, it was highly competitive. The kids were scratching and falling down, trying to get the ball, determined to put it in the basket.
After the game, the kids were tired and sprinted over to the Gatorade cooler to quench their thirst.
Camp counselor Maria Drain feels that the skills the young girls were learning are helpful as they continue to learn the game of basketball.
As the camp came to a close Wednesday, Drain-Rogers said she hopes that the children learned the fundamentals of the game and that they will continue to improve their basketball game.
Drain-Rogers said she hopes some of her campers this week will become future Lady Tigers.
Now the Tiger Tots camp is over, Drain-Rogers today begins her second camp, which involves fourth- to 12th-grade girls.
Gramblinite staff member Roderick Ceaser and contributing writer Qwanelia Williams contributed to this story.