Brooks connection makes one final appearance this Saturday in the IBCA All-Star Game in Pontiac

Every successful coaching career ends in a swan song.  For St. Joseph-Ogden head basketball coach Brian Brooks, that end is here and he is getting a bonus in the process; a chance to coach his son Jordan one final time.  

 

Brooks, who amassed a 324-121 record in his 15 years as the Spartans’ head coach, will coach one final time this weekend, in the IBCA All-Star Games on Saturday at Pontiac High School.  

Brooks, who will coach the South squad for Class 1A-2A, has had a storied coaching career, and among those 324 wins have come 10 regional titles, three sectional titles, two trips to the super-sectional, and two appearances in the state finals with a championship in 2016.

 

Jordan, who graduated from SJO in 2018, will continue his playing career at Lincoln Land Community College in Springfield and according to his father, one of the factors in stepping down from coaching is so he can see his son play at the collegiate level.

 

Brooks, who has never been a huge self-promoter of his coaching legacy, and is appreciative of the honor of being named head coach of the South team.

 

“I’ve never been big on what my coaching legacy is or will be, as that is not why I got into the coaching business in the first place.  The IBCA All-Star game is the top all-star game in the state of Illinois and showcases the best players from all over our state, so to be named the head coach of one of its teams is a great honor and I am truly appreciative of the opportunity”, Brooks said about his coaching legacy and being named the South coach.

 

With Brooks stepping down as head coach of the Spartans, it will give him more time to watch Jordan play at Lincoln Land, something he is looking forward to doing.

 

“Not coaching basketball next year will be very different and I don’t think that it officially hit me yet, but it will allow me to get to most of Jordan’s games next year and be able to watch him play and not worry about coaching him up, which I have done for many years”, Brooks added about the difference next year will be with no involvement in coaching.

 

On being named to the South squad to play one last time for his dad, Jordan is honored to be named to the team and is looking forward to having his father serve as the head coach.

 

“It is a true honor to be able to play in the IBCA All-Star game.  Our state has so much talent and so many good players, and to be able to be named among all the other good players is very humbling. It also is an honor to play for my dad one last time before going off to college. Especially since he just retired from coaching, it’ll be a fun experience for sure”, Brooks said on being named to the team, while also getting to play for his dad one final time.

 

Life hasn’t been easy for either Brooks while either playing or coaching for one another, but somehow, they have made the situation work.

 

“Playing for my dad the past few years has been a great experience.  I’m very used to it since growing up he usually would coach our travel teams until about 6th grade.  It was tough at times, but I wouldn’t trade him being the coach for anyone else. It taught me how to be mentally tough and he is a great mentor on and off the court not only for me, but for the rest of the guys on the team as well”, the younger Brooks said regarding having his father as his coach for the better part of his playing career.

 

On the contrary, the elder Brooks also acknowledges that it has not been easy coaching his son, but adds that there are more positives than negatives in the experience.

 

“I was coaching before Jordan was even born, so I didn’t think I’d ever get into coaching thinking one day I’d get the opportunity to coach my son”, Brooks said on coaching his son.  Brooks goes on to say that “I’m old enough to have developed some thick skin over the years, and I’ll admit that sometimes he didn’t get the proper credit from his head coach that he deserved for things that he did right, but he certainly heard about it in the locker room when something didn’t go right”.

 

In the end, however, Brooks is confident that his son has acquired the necessary skills from playing for his dad that will serve him well not only in college, but later in life as well.

 

“He (Jordan) had to develop some mental toughness over the years, but at the end of the day, I couldn’t have been prouder to be his dad and coach at the same time”, Brooks added.

 

The IBCA All-Star game will take place Saturday, June 9th and the Class 1A-2A game will begin at approximately 4:00 pm.  A complete list of the All-Star rosters can be found on the IBCA website at www.ibcaillinois.org.  

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