Yanders Law

Yanders Law Blue Elite (16u) - Homegrown, top-tier AAU squad

Today we spotlight the 16 & under Yanders Law Blue Elite team that is living up to their name and putting the AAU scene on notice.

The NY2LA Spring Warm Up over the weekend confirmed what many already knew: the Yanders Law program can claim many of the top sophomores not only in the state, but beyond. Yanders Law Blue Elite defeated the Green Bay Gunners, ET21 Buckeyes, Mac Irvin Fire EYBL, and Team Teague in the 16u platinum bracket.

Blue Elite fell to Meanstreets (another EYBL team), which went on to win the bracket. This Yanders Law squad is a team of guys from Southwest Missouri that have mostly been playing with each other for four or five years. Many of these other teams consist of new, recruited players from a wide area.

For Yanders Law Blue Elite to be able to hang with teams that have shoe deals or NBA players backing them is immensely impressive. With all the noise this team is making after just a couple weeks of practice together, a few of these guys are likely to be more heavily recruited themselves.

Every player on this team contributed in one way or another at the NY2LA Spring Warm Up. Scoring, defending, or being active from the sidelines are all important; we saw plenty of that this weekend. One player that has truly upped his game recently is Zach Howell, and it showed in Milwaukee.

“Zach has improved a ton” said Yanders Law founder and namesake, Rob Yanders. “He hit some huge shots this weekend and showed out.” Another player that was making things look easy against stiff competition was Anton Brookshire.

In a recap of early tournament action, the NY2LA website had this to say about Brookshire:

Brookshire really captains the ship for his team with his play and is efficient in his work. He picked up where he left off last summer with a solid opening game, getting to the hoop and finishing with good control, burying shots from both the mid and long levels and was otherwise operating as a facilitator for his teammates, pushing the ball up the floor and getting his guys scoring opportunities.
— NY2LAsports.com

One more player that has to be named is Isaac Haney. If you were paying attention to his season in Dora, you know that he has taken his game to another stratosphere. The kid can score with ease and had one of the prettiest shots in the whole tournament, regardless of age or association.

Things are just getting started for not only this team, but all of Yanders Law Basketball. To keep track of our guys and girls, make sure to follow along on Twitter @YandersLaw and add us on Facebook.

One-on-One: Connor Killian

Our final conversation that took place ahead of the NY2LA Spring Warm Up in Milwaukee was with sophomore, Connor Killion.

Connor Killion recently finished up his sophomore season with East Newton High. He said that the season was a bit of a struggle at times and the team finished below .500. “We had great team chemistry, but things never quite came together” said Killion.

He said that he is excited to get spring and summer ball underway. “School ball is always very structured, where this stuff is a lot more loose and free.” He also said that his biggest takeaway from the season was stepping up as a leader after earning a starting role. “I also worked to establish myself as an offensive threat” Connor continued.

Killion will try and carry that scorer mentality into his second year with Yanders Law, where he plans to be a scorer and shooter, while remaining unselfish with the basketball. In his short time with Yanders Law and coming to The Basketball Movement, he says that he is impressed with the progress that has been made.

Just within these few years, the floors have been re-done, these seats weren’t here ... I love coming here and playing with Yanders Law because it is highly competitive.
— Connor Killion

East Newton High is 73 miles from The Basketball Movement. Coach Lou Carasquillo had the connections to get with Connor and it has been a great fit.

With the first tourney of spring wrapping up and much more action on the horizon, we asked what Killian intends to work on this season with Yanders Law. “I want to keep focusing on my leadership to always be a role model for any team I’m on. For this team I want to fill my role and keep improving upon my strengths.”

As Connor Killian and Yanders Law Basketball continue to put in work this spring and summer, we look forward to seeing continued growth. There are many good things in store for the program coming up, so be sure to keep checking back in with us!

One-on-One: Chris Ward, new Trainer and Coach

The Basketball Movement and Yanders Law are excited to announce the hiring of Yanders Law alum, Chris Ward as a Trainer and Coach.

Yanders Law is selective in it’s hires, and we know exactly what we are getting in Chris Ward. Chris has been coming around the gym and working with Robert Yanders long before Rob bought the facility and turned it into The Basketball Movement. Ward was among the first to play under the Yanders Law banner and has been involved with what Rob has been doing ever since.

“Being on Rob’s first Yanders Law team, it’s great to come back and get to be around the other generations” said Ward. He is not only a Yanders Law alumni, but a familiar face for many area hoops fans as well. Ward’s jersey is retired at Kickapoo High School where he was an All-District and All-State player.

Chris went on to play at Philander Smith College in Little Rock and even played professionally in the Republic of Georgia for a while. He knew that his passion for basketball was well-suited for training and coaching, so he came home and is now back where it all began.

Knowing Rob since he was 10 and playing with him since he was 14, Chris says that it is incredible to see what Rob has built since then. He recalls winning a lot of games with Yanders Law in high school. Those are times you don’t forget - especially with so many takeaways that come from working with Yanders.

Playing for Rob was and is worth it. He teaches you consistency and that hard work can take you lots of places. Summer workouts, everything, it all sticks with you. Rob is all about character and using basketball as a tool to give you a better life. It all stems from hard work.
— Chris Ward

Ward says that he is going to be giving lessons, doing strengths and conditioning, and helping to run clinics in addition to becoming a Yanders Law Coach. “It’s a job, but I get to be working every day with people that want to be better” says Ward. “Basketball is everything to me; it makes it easy to get up in the morning. So yeah, it’s a job, but it doesn’t feel like it to me.”

Asked about his training/coaching style, Chris says that he will naturally emulate Yanders. “I mean, I’m just going to do what I’ve learned from Rob over so many years.” He says that he is loud, energetic, and quick to relate to the players because he has been in their shoes. “As a coach, I like fast pace. I want to really see my players getting up and down the floor.”

Having played for Robert Yanders, Ward knows the meaning of “hard work” and it is probably not a term he would use lightly. Players that get to work with Ward will experience second-hand Yanders intensity, so they will need to come ready.

The Basketball Movement and Yanders Law are thrilled to help Chris Ward bring his basketball journey full circle. Watching players pursue their passion (basketball or otherwise) is one of the greatest feelings for coaches, trainers, and anyone else that is a part of our organizations. He will be another tremendous asset to our team.

Welcome aboard, Chris!

Two-on-One: Anton Brookshire and Carson Noel

Kickapoo High teammates, Anton Brookshire and Carson Noel team up again as Yanders Law begins it’s spring basketball circuit.

Now in Wisconsin for the NY2LA Swish ‘N Dish Spring Warm Up, we had a chance to catch up with Anton Brookshire and Carson Noel before they headed to Milwaukee. Coming off of a successful year at Kickapoo High School, the pair are ready to make a splash in spring and summer ball.

In case you haven’t been paying attention, Anton Brookshire has been with Yanders Law for a while now. Carson has only been coming around to The Basketball Movement for a year or so. “I know this is where Coach Chris played and I‘ve had some teammates play here” Carson said. “Still I recognize a lot of these guys, but there are some new faces.”

Anton says that he has known most of his Yanders Law teammates since 6th grade and has played AAU with many of them for several years now.

When asked what they took away from this past season of school ball, Carson talked on the importance of playing every game and going through every practice playing your hardest. Anton said that it felt good to get as far as they did as a team. “I feel that we could’ve made it to state. We ran into an opponent that was loaded, but that happens” said Brookshire.

With just a few short weeks of practice, the guys have headed to Milwaukee to show what they can do as a unit. Anton noted that the competition would be consistently tougher for spring and summer AAU compared to school ball. He and Carson agreed that a similar mentality would still be necessary: aggressiveness. Being ready to kill it when the time comes, but still keeping teammates involved.

Spring and summer are great times to get a step up on competition by improving many facets of your game. In particular, Carson said that he would be looking to improve his shot, seeing the floor, and know what’s coming. That last one is an important part of your game that Rob Yanders and the Yanders Law coaches can cultivate in young players.

Anton said that he is wanting to step up his defense and his leadership. “I’ve already grown as a leader playing varsity this year, but I want to continue to grow.”

Both of these young men are approaching the “offseason” the right way. In order to continuously improve, basketball needs to be approached frequently, aggressively, and passionately. This NY2LA Spring Warm Up is a great start and will provide numerous lessons, win-or-lose.

For more Yanders Law action keep checking back with us right here.

One-on-One: Jadon Gilpin

Ahead of summer action for many of our Yanders Law athletes, we got the chance to catch up with a few of our young men. This is One-on-One with Jadon Gilpin.

An athletic 6 foot 3, junior wing Jadon Gilpin looks like a player. A good-looking stroke from outside and soft touch inside show that the Yanders Law staple has come a long way in his time with the program. Gilpin is coming off of a varsity season with Glendale High that demonstrated the improvements he has made over the years.

“We definitely could have gone farther” Jadon recalls of the Falcons 2018-19 season. “We had a lot of talent, so it is a bit disappointing.” He also pointed out that it is time to put that aside as the offseason begins and focus on improving as he always has.

Jadon Gilpin went from having limited offensive impact as a sophomore to being an All-District performer this past season. Asked what he is looking to improve upon this summer, he said that there is always room for improvement in all areas, so he is focusing on becoming a better all-around player.

“I want to focus on catch-and-shoot situations and being a better scorer in general” Jadon said. He says that this season helped him in getting more out of the offense with the ball running through him on many possessions.

As he looks to improve, he will be playing with a lot of familiar faces for Yanders Law Basketball this summer.

I’ve been playing with Yanders Law and coming around The Basketball Movement since jr. high - 7th grade. I’ve played with these guys for years. It’s always fun to compete at such a high level and just play the game versus the structure that comes with school ball.
— Jadon Gilpin

Asked to describe his role with the team, Jadon says that he will look to do a bit of everything. He will focus on defense, stretching the floor, and hitting open jumpers.

Gilpin has been a great player to have in the gym at The Basketball Movement and on the Yanders Law Basketball squad. A nice guy off the court and a big part of what we do on it - we are thrilled to have him back as his team gears up for their first game tomorrow as they travel to Milwaukee.

Good luck to Jadon this season and all of our squads! Keep an eye out for more interviews incoming over the next few days. ‘Til next time!

Appreciation - Yanders Law

Within Yanders Law, there is an emphasis on producing not only better players, but better people as well.

Too often in today’s game, players struggle to appreciate everything that is done for them. Players tend to see coaches, teachers, and guardians as little more than tools in place to help them improve. While coaches certainly do their best to help players improve, the good ones go out of their way to make sure that they are enriching the player’s lives beyond just the sport of basketball.

The amount of time that goes into being a successful coach is often dismissed because it revolves around a sport/game. People and players do not always stop and consider that coaches are putting in the time because they want to help young people grow in many ways using the sport they are coaching.

(Click here for more on Rob Yanders and how Yanders Law strives to set excellent examples for its players)

It is true that basketball coaches do what they do because they love it. Even so, good coaches are deserving of your gratitude. If a coach, assistant, ball boy, bus driver, or anyone in between has taken the time to help you get where you are - thank them.

The occasional “Thank you” can go a long way. Not only do coaches or anyone else truly love to hear it, but it can help to further connections that you have with these people. A coach-player relationship is symbiotic. That means that it is mutually beneficial for both parties. If the coach does improve not only your game, but your future, they deserve your thanks. Likewise, player successes are also coach successes. Take the time to appreciate each other.

Speaking of thankless jobs, don’t forget to stop and appreciate parents/guardians as well. The hours, days, and years that they put in working, raising you, feeding you, covering your teams dues, buying equipment, and driving around deserve so much thanks. It is true that as parents or guardians, they have certain responsibilities. That does not mean that their hard work should go unnoticed. Players, these individuals in your lives deserve appreciation. Remember to thank them as often as you can.

Parents and guardians - remember that the grind doesn’t stop for you either. You have already put in so much time and effort, but you know well that those responsibilities don’t take days off. You are so lucky to have these players in your life. Soak up all of the good times and stay strong through the bad - your kids don’t stop needing you.

In speaking with Yanders Law’s founder, Rob Yanders, he describes that parent’s roles with their player are almost always bigger than either of them even realize.

In helping get these kids through the recruiting phase, many people don’t realize that the guardians are being recruited and interviewed too. Parents often serve as a window into the player’s background and personal life. Recruiters don’t underestimate these roles and neither should the families.
— Robert Yanders

You will have many relationships in your life. Some will be personal, some will be professional, and all of them should be handled with care. Take time to appreciate everyone that has been a part of your journey. Aside from personally reflecting on these relationships, go out of your way to thank the individuals involved.

In a time in which some players may feel entitled, stand out as someone that coaches and other individuals want to help because you are so grateful. Never stop grinding - on the court or in life!

Playing for a tough coach or with a difficult teammate

You can pick your friends, you can pick your nose, but you can't always pick your teammates or coach. Or something like that.

If you have played a sport for any length of time, you have likely already encountered either a tough coach or teammate. Teams consist of many different styles, attitudes, and demeanors. In some ways, this is what makes team sports special. Sometimes though, it can be really hard to adjust to.

You will have teammates over the years that will not play hard. Some may not even have any desire to play at all. Some will hog the ball, others may pick on you at practice. These things will seem very difficult to get over in the moment, but in the long term, you will be better for it. Not only as a player, but as a person.

These people will not be limited to sports, but all aspects of life. You will experience many of the same personality traits someday at work, or in social situations. Learning to roll with the punches and taking the high road is not easy, but it is a key part of growth.

Ask not what your teammates can do for you, ask what you can do for your teammates.
— Magic Johnson

Not meshing with your coach

Not always getting along with teammates is one thing. Those are your peers that you share many of the same circumstances with. Even more difficult is experiencing a coach that rubs you the wrong way or that you do not see eye-to-eye with.

It is easier said than done, but this situation must be treated similarly to the teammate issue above. Taking the high road in a situation where you are the subordinate is a very backwards-feeling scenario.

If your coach is on you for no reason, stand tall and do not let him/her get a rise out of you. If you are not getting minutes or situations that you deserve, keep grinding until everyone in the gym can clearly see the mistake. Learning to turn the other cheek to those in positions of authority will pay off exponentially as far as your growth as a person.

Know when things have gone too far

Standing tall and not retaliating is the go-to response when you encounter these tough situations. That does not mean that you should just allow yourself to be bullied or harassed. If you feel that things have gone to far with a teammate, bring it up to them. If that does not resolve the issue, it may be time to approach the coach.

If the coach is the problem, discuss it with someone that you trust. A lot of coaches are intense people, and it may just be that they get a bit too passionate about the sport or getting the most out of their players. If it is going beyond that or becoming personal, it may be time to voice your concerns to someone with the ability to resolve the situation.

For examples of great coaches, a player-first atmosphere, and a true team mentality, you are in the right place and Robert Yanders is your man. Contact us at basketballmovemet@yahoo.com to get involved in our program!

Super sophomores make All-State teams

Anton Brookshire and Isaac Haney top off incredible sophomore seasons with All-State team selections.

We have bragged a lot this season about Yanders Law and The Basketball Movement athletes, Anton Brookshire and Isaac Haney. What began the season as a couple of sophomores that were defying lofty expectations turned into routine torchings of bigger, stronger, and older opponents. What seemed exceptional in the early going became routine for these two athletes.

Anton Brookshire led his Kickapoo team on an incredible stretch that fell just short of a Missouri Class 5 final four appearance. Along the way, Brookshire was named Player of the Year in his conference as well as POY in District 11. His buzzer beater to seal the district championship certainly didn’t hurt his cause for that honor.

Again, only a sophomore, Brookshire has been named to the All-State team for Missouri’s largest class. Anton has already been receiving plenty of interest and offers from good basketball schools, but his stock is undoubtedly about to spike following a fantastic finish to his year two campaign.

Isaac Haney had himself an eventful sophomore season as well. “Ice” Haney was on a heater all season long. Like Brookshire, Isaac was all-conference, all-district, and all-state for class 1 in Missouri. He carried Dora all the way to the state championship game, coming up just shy of a perfect season.

Despite Dora losing their final game, individually, Isaac Haney’s body of work was undeniable and he was named Missouri Class 1 Player of the Year. This is an incredible honor that will also draw the attention of multiple D-1 programs, regardless of class. The size of your school doesn’t matter when you can put the ball in the hole at an elite level.

Congratulations to both of these young men who had exemplary years for their high school teams. We’ve said it before, but their work ethic and dedication perfectly personifies what we strive for at The Basketball Movement and within the Yanders Law program. We could not be more proud and are thrilled to get to see these guys in action for years to come.