By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal Detroit is known for the cars it makes, but metro Detroit area could just as well be known for the athletes it produces. Chicago Bulls great B.J. Armstrong, former Duke standout Shane Battier, former Detroit Piston great, and former Detroit Mayor Dave Bing, and former Michigan State great Mateen Cleaves, the list goes on and on. Fans of the American Youth Basketball Tour (AYBT)   Read More ...

Categories: featured, Michigan

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal With the rapid proliferation of smart phones and compact, high-quality video recorders, it seems like nearly everyone has the ability to capture and upload footage to the internet with just a few clicks of a mouse or swipes on a touch screen. American Youth Basketball Tour (AYBT) events are no different. AYBT has a considerable presence on video sharing sites like YouTube, and as   Read More ...

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal The American Youth Basketball Tour (AYBT) heads into Kalamazoo (MI) this weekend, June 28-29, for the annual KZOO Shootout. The tournament follows AYBT’s traditional five-game District Series Event (DSE) format. Student-athletes will face opponents at one of three sites, including Comstock High School (2107 N 26th St., Kalamazoo), Portage Courthouse Athletic Facility (7365 S Sprinkle Rd., Portage), and Schoolcraft High School (551 East Lyons   Read More ...

Categories: featured, Michigan

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal Over 30 years. Five state titles. Five-hundred-and-four career wins. And a legion of former players and fans that would walk over fire for him. Yes, it’s been quite a career for Coach Goorman. Last year, Jim Goorman, a founding member of the American Youth Basketball Tour was honored with a selection to the Muskegon (MI)  Area Sports Hall of Fame (MASHF) for his outstanding   Read More ...

Categories: featured, Fort Wayne, Michigan

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal One of the founding members of the American Youth Basketball Tournament (AYBT), Jim Goorman, has his hands in a lot of tournaments as summer is realized and the AYBT season starts to heat up. But the AYBT event in Muskegon, MI is and will always be special for Goorman. “It has been one of the joys of my life, to watch the level of   Read More ...

Categories: featured, Michigan

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal This past spring marked the completion of an incredible journey for the Eaton Rapids (MI) Greyhound varsity girls basketball team. Successful championship runs in several American Youth Basketball Tour (AYBT) events culminated this past winter in a Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) Class B state hoops title. And the combination of AYBT events and a whole lot of hard work (and good fortune)   Read More ...

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal Butch Brown, a coach for the G-Town Tigers basketball team affiliated with Grant (MI) High School, had to fight to get his kid’s basketball program to accept the wisdom of participating in American Youth Basketball Tour (AYBT) events. But once the program became involved, participation and skill levels have risen each season. “At first the coaches running the school programs didn’t want the kids   Read More ...

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal The American Youth Basketball Tour (AYBT) rolls into Battle Creek (MI) this weekend, June 14-15, to fill ‘Cereal City’ with loads of basketball players and fans. The five-game tourney structure District Series Event (DSE) will take place at Battle Creek Central High School (100 W Van Buren St.) and Full Blast Recreation Center (35 Hamblin Ave.). The latter is an 88,000-square foot fitness center,   Read More ...

Categories: featured, Michigan

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal The Capital Area Cougars club youth basketball league has a lot in common with the American Youth Basketball Tour (AYBT). For one, both organizations host children with the intention of giving them an opportunity to become better basketball players. For another thing, both groups bring together diverse groups of kids to learn, play and have fun together. But the two groups are even more   Read More ...

Categories: featured, Fort Wayne, Michigan

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal The American Youth Basketball Tour (AYBT) rumbles into Metro Detroit this weekend with the East Michigan Slam. The event, which follows the AYBT’s five-game District Series Event (DSE) structure, will take place June 7-8 in the Village of Oxford. The event will take place at Oxford High School (745 N. Oxford Rd.). The event is open to girls in eighth grade, and for boys in grades   Read More ...

Categories: featured, Michigan

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal The American Youth Basketball Tour (AYBT) takes over Grand Rapids (MI) June 7 in an event that celebrates the city’s close relationship with the Grand River. The Grand Rapids River City Shootout will take place in four locales across the city, including, Caledonia High School (9050 Kraft Ave.), Cornerstone University (1001 E. Beltline Ave. NE), the Grand Rapids Courthouse Athletic Facility (8455 Bryon Commerce   Read More ...

Categories: Michigan

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal In basketball terms, Brad Redford certainly has had his share of success. For example, the former Frankenmuth High School (MI) star took the 2008 Michigan Mr. Basketball Award (Michigan State University’s Draymond Green was also a finalist), while helping to lead his team to the state quarterfinals. He certainly earned the award, finishing with an astronomical 36.7 points-per-game average, making a state-record 140 three-pointers   Read More ...

Categories: featured, Michigan, Nationals, Ohio

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal The upcoming Holland Area Shoreline Shootout event, taking place the weekend of May 31-June1, will be packed with exciting basketball action. This AYBT event will host boys fifth-through-eleventh grades and girls fourth-through-eleventh grades. Spectators can see all the action for $5 per day for adult and $4 for students and seniors. John Genung will again direct the Holland area event, which has been taking   Read More ...

Categories: featured, Michigan

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal Sure, he has an arm full of American Youth Basketball Tour (AYBT) national title trophies. He’s even had the honor of coaching national championship teams on both the girls and boys side during the very same year. But winning isn’t the only thing with which AYBT coach Louis Churchwell of Muskegon (MI) is concerned. In fact, Churchwell likes to say he uses kids’ natural   Read More ...

Categories: featured, Fort Wayne, Michigan

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal For most of the year, the town of Ypsilanti usually sits in the shadow of neighboring Ann Arbor, home of the University of Michigan. But for one weekend a year, at least, Ypsilanti towers over its neighbor to the west . And that weekend is coming up soon. Ypsilanti, home of Eastern Michigan University, will host the American Youth Basketball Tour (AYBT) May 31-June   Read More ...

Categories: featured, Michigan

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal While many coaches give lip service to the responsibility they have as teachers and mentors to mold their players into responsible adults, one Fort Wayne-area group is putting its money where its mouth is. Or rather, it is putting its time and effort where its mouth is. Legit Basketball, a 22-year old skills program that started as an attempt by founder Arthur Gregory to   Read More ...

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal The American Youth Basketball Tour (AYBT) makes a stop in Mt. Pleasant (MI) Memorial Day weekend to stage the May Madness Michigan State Tournament. The event differs from normal AYBT District Series Event in that the structure of the tournament is Pool Play to Bracket Play. Players go from a guaranteed five-game pool play configuration to a single elimination tournament on the event’s last   Read More ...

Categories: Michigan

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal The City of Jackson, home of Michigan’s first state prison, hopefully won’t be the scene of any jailbreaks when the American Youth Basketball Tour (AYBT) rolls into town May 17-18 for a District Series Event. Instead, Jackson will be the scene that weekend of a lot of fast breaks. Hosted by Director Kirk Glassel, the event will welcome boys third-through-eleventh grades and girls fourth-through-eleventh   Read More ...

Categories: featured, Michigan

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal Over the first half of his life, John Waller lived in the West African nation of Liberia. Not that you’d know it. Waller, who was adopted at 12 by Angela and Darin Waller, doesn’t seem to have any discernible accent or practice divergent cultural customs. In fact, he pretty much seems like your average American teenager. And yet, behind the appearance of normalcy lies a   Read More ...

Categories: Bloomington, featured, Michigan

By Mark Lewis Local Sports Journal For coaches, one of the benefits of having their programs participate in American Youth Basketball Tour (AYBT) events is that they can have players from several grades learn vital hoops skills over the summer. To ensure those skills work their way throughout the program, it is even better when those players are related. Nowhere is that more true than at Kent City (MI), where   Read More ...

Categories: featured, Michigan