The good part for these aspiring hoop stars is that former University of Nevada stars are coming back to the Truckee Meadows in order to run their own camps and give back to the community that supported them during their college days.
The latest is Ramon Sessions, who just finished up his fifth season in the NBA and is now a free agent after getting his first postseason experience as a member of the Los Angeles Lakers. He decided not to exercise a $4.55 million player option for 2012-13 season in hopes of landing a multiple-year contract with a winning team. He averaged 11.3 points and 5.5 assists per game last season with the Lakers and the Cavaliers.
Sessions also runs a camp in his hometown of Myrtle Beach, SC. But he has a special place in his heart for Reno since he was not heavily recruited coming out of high school and Nevada gave him a shot to fine tune his skills in preparation for an NBA career.
Sessions was in the middle of the action Monday, the first day of the camp, coaching players and teaching them fundamentals.
“I come here and do this once a summer, and it’s always good to come back to my second home,” Sessions said. “I did three of the best years of my life out here. It’s something I cherish day in and day out. Just to come back and see the smile on the kids’ faces is enough for me.”
The fifth annual Ramon Sessions Basketball Camp runs until Thursday at the South Reno Athletic Club and is for kids ages 6-16.
Sessions isn’t the only former Nevada star leading the camp. Eathan O’Bryant was a star point guard for the Wolf Pack in the 90’s and is the camp organizer.
O’Bryant was a two-time all-Big West Conference performer and was third in the nation in assists his senior season. O’Bryant played professionally in Europe and was a member of the Harlem Globetrotters.
O’Bryant also hosts an annual spring break basketball camp in April for the same age group at the South Reno Athletic Club.
“I can only imagine how the kids feel,” O’Bryant said. “To have an actual NBA player here participating in the camp and showing you drills and moves, it’s got to be a big thrill.”