GUARD WILL TOUR WITH NBC CAMPS SELECT TEAM LHS SOPH TO PLAY IN ENGLAND
By Raenelle Kwock
Observer Staff Writer
Playing basketball is a joy for Rick Anderson.
"Mostly the bragging rights," he said about why he plays.
The 15-year-old La Grande High School sophomore boils it down to its simplest terms: "Because it's fun, I like playing basketball."
He grew up playing the game and enjoys shooting hoops with friends. Anderson, who is a point guard on the varsity team this season, was recently selected for the NBC Camps basketball Tour to the British Isles next summer.
"It's nice," La Grande boys varsity basketball coach Aaron Mills said. "It's going to be a good experience for him (and) add to his ability to play next year. It's not easy to get on that team."
Anderson was among 15 players selected out of 7,800 applicants.
Fred Crowell founded Northwest Basketball Camp in 1971, but it outgrew its name and is now known as NBC Camps. NBC Camps began sending tours around the world in 1977.
The NBC Camps Web site states "NBC Tours is a branch of NBC Camps designed to further our mission to encourage athletes to lead a life of physical, mental, social and spiritual excellence."
Ever since he started playing (probably around 2 years old), Anderson always has been a point guard and has reasons for playing that position.
"So I can touch the ball a lot," he said. "So I can be a little dictator on the court. Control everything, I don't know, something like that."
He admires current NBA players Michael Jordan and Jason Kidd.
Anderson said Jordan is a great person, and he always watched him when he was little because he was not cocky.
"(He's) my No. 1 favorite," he said.
Anderson said Kidd has got a lot of talent, even though he doesn't always like Kidd's behavior.
"He's the best point guard," he said.
Anderson has been to eight NBC Camps and was nominated by coaches for tour selection based on ability and attitude.
After the first round of tryouts, two recommendations and a parents' letter were sent in. Then, after Anderson was selected, he was placed on a team and was sent a manual that explained everything about the tour process for the year.
He needs to raise $3,500 in and will be counting on fund-raisers to help. Auctions and raffles will start early next year.
In addition, a 3-on-3 benefit tournament will be scheduled in February or March.