Male Basketball Practices for the First Time in 2021

#1 Male practices for the first time this season.
#1 Male practices for the first time this season.(Kendrick Haskins)
Published: Jan. 20, 2021 at 7:04 PM EST
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - NBA superstar, Allen Iverson didn’t want to talk about practice almost 20 years ago, but ask any player at a Jefferson County Public School, and they will have a whole new appreciation for practice. “I’m blessed that we have the opportunity to play. I’m here to work, and hopefully we can get back to where we were last year,” said Male High School senior, Cameron Pope.

On Tuesday, JCPS voted to allow winter sports to begin practice with games starting on February 1st. Pope watched the vote with his mom with the hopes of not losing his senior year. “It was a lot of anxiety as we heard the votes, but we heard a lot of yeses, so it kind eased our hearts. It was a lot of joy when they made the decision too. Kinda screamed,” Pope said.

It’s a feeling of joy and relief for this Male High School team as they were able to start practice today. This is a Male High team that was ranked #1 in the state heading into the Sweet 16 last year before the season was halted due to Covid 19. They’re ranked #1 in the preseason this year. So, you can understand why they’re just a little bit antsy to get back out on the floor. “It means the world to us because as a basketball coach, I want to be able to coach. Players want to be able to play. Especially last year, the season that we had, and then the state tournament’s cut short. We obviously want to get back out here and play. Kids need this,” said head coach, Tim Haworth. “It feels like the first day of school actually. New gear. I’m just ready to get to it with my brothers,” said Pope.

Now that they’ve cleared the hurdle of being able to play games, Male is tasked with scheduling games. For now, they have 14 on their schedule, but they’re looking for more. “We’re still trying to get three or four more games scheduled, but a lot of our games are already set in stone,” said Male head coach, Tim Haworth.

Of course, early on, the JCPS schools will be at a bit of disadvantage against the Catholic schools and other regions who are already playing games. “I don’t want to lose games, but you only grow sometimes through adversity. So, they’re going to have to experience some adversity early on,” Haworth said.

Male’s season is scheduled to begin February 5th at PRP.

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