Takin’ it to the hoop

ESPN is a fixture in most households across the nation, but few viewers have the chance to personally know the athletes featured on the television channel.

Bryan High students are an exception, as senior J-Mychal Reese has not only been featured on ESPN, but in numerous sporting publications and scouting organizations for his success in basketball.

In fact, ESPN.com ranked J-Mychal as their No. 28 prospect nation-wide for high school basketball players overall.

The 6’2” point guard has been out because of an injury for the bulk of this season, but has played for the Varsity basketball team for the past three years, while also playing for the Houston Hoops.

“[Playing at Bryan] made me a better player,” J-Mychal said. “It’s been real fun, especially my first three years. We had some pretty good teams and made it to the playoffs.”

Playing for the Hoops and the Vikings, J-Mychal has traveled across the country playing basketball in pursuit of a basketball career.

“Over the years, I’ve played mostly on the same teams with a lot of my best friends from Houston and so we’ve played together since we were little,” J-Mychal said. “I’ve grown up with them just playing basketball. That’s been fun, just developing a relationship with them.”

Last summer, J-Mychal qualified to participate in the Lebron James Skills Academy, where he worked with James himself and high school basketball players from across the nation.

“At the LeBron James Camp, I got to meet him and he’s my favorite player,” J-Mychal said. “It was three days and they set us up on teams. We did a lot of drills and played a lot of games. [I like] getting to meet a lot of other players from around the country that are just as good as you. There’s a lot of competition”

J-Mychal says he’s been playing for his whole life, with his family playing a strong role in supporting and encouraging him to pursue basketball.

“I started when I was 3,” J-Mychal said. “My dad was a coach so I used to always come to the gym and shoot with him and my mom pushed me to play. My brother used to play when he was younger, so we used to always play together all the time.”

J-Mychal’s father, John Reese, was the previous head basketball coach at Bryan High, before taking a job with Texas A&M University.

“It was a joy to watch him grow and mature from both aspects,” Reese said. “J-Mychal the player, was constantly challenging himself and teammates to maximize potential. As a student, I thought he was focused because he knows the importance of going to the next level depends on his grades as well as his ability on the court.”

Now, J-Mychal, who is the seventh-highest ranking point guard in the nation for the ESPNU high school class of 2012, has signed with Texas A&M University to play basketball after graduating this year.

“It has been [J-Mychal’s] dream to compete at the highest level,” Reese said. “So we have just tried to make sure he understands hard work and dedication are the two major keys in being successful. We go by the 3 H’s… Humble, Hungry & Honest.”

As for J-Mychal, he says that he’s looking forward to pursuing his basketball career at Texas A&M University.

“I’m really excited,” J-Mychal said. “Playing on the next level, playing on TV, playing against a lot of talent. I’m just looking to make it to that next level.”

That next level for J-Mychal means playing in the NBA, where he says he’ll “hopefully” be after playing college ball.

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