Clark Atlanta coach Darrell Walker is getting NBA friends to coach up his players
Posted By: Elynor Moss on February 23, 2018 |
Rasheed Wallace and Alex English are among those helping the Panthers excel
Clark Atlanta University basketball coach Darrell Walker sits in silence behind the scorer’s table, nodding his head to the music. A speaker blasts black barbecue favorites such as “Before I Let You Go” by Maze Featuring Frankie Beverly and The Emotions’ “Best of My Love” nearby. Practice doesn’t start until 6 p.m., but most of the team has been going through **** drills since before 5.
The Panthers have lost three of their last five games including Thursday night’s loss to crosstown rival Morehouse 72-67, to finish the regular season 22-4. But you wouldn’t have known it by looking at Walker. Or anyone else. To describe the demeanor in the gym as poised would be an understatement.
The oft-used phrase “an organization takes on the personality of its leader” has taken on a whole new meaning when applied to Walker.
Having coached and played at the highest level, the Chicago native has used his professional basketball acumen to usher in a new era of Clark Atlanta basketball that has manifested itself both on and off the court.
“He has a winning mentality,” said Anthony Williams, a senior point guard from Brooklyn, New York. “I was the first point guard that he recruited here, and he believed in me. Coach Walker has trust in all [of] his players — that’s how we were winning — and we play hard ’cause he played hard.”
His résumé as a player speaks for itself. A standout at the University of Arkansas, Walker spent 10 seasons in the NBA and played for some of the greatest coaches in Phil Jackson and Chuck Daly. At his peak, the former point guard was nearly averaging a triple-double — a feat that Williams has been trying to replicate.
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