Kenny Brooks, Virginia Tech players pay it forward at Twin Hoops camp
Summers are far from quiet in the gyms of William Fleming High School, where brothers Damon and Ramon Williams hold their annual Twin Hoops basketball camp.
Now in their 23rd year at the helm, the former VMI standouts brought in some reinforcements for Wednesday's session.
"They get a chance to see people that they actually see on TV and interact with them and see they're just as normal as they are," said Ramon Williams. "But their talent level is on another level, and hopefully our kids can look up to that."
Virginia Tech head women's basketball coach Kenny Brooks brought three of his players: freshman Elizabeth Kitley, graduate transfer from Georgia Taja Cole and his daughter, senior Kendyl Brooks.
"The kids came up, they got to see all different kinds: guards, centers, point guards, and just understand that they know anyone can do it if they just work hard," Kenny Brooks said.
For Brooks, the challenge going into his fourth season at Tech is replacing the production from departing seniors like Regan Magarity and Taylor Emery.
One of those replacements will be Cole, a Richmond native who led the SEC in assists last year. She said she's looking forward to sharing her knowledge and experience with her new teammates.
"We have a really good team, a lot of talent," Cole said. "If you were to ask me one of the goals for this year, I would say to win an ACC Championship. I believe that we have the talent to do that, and definitely the coaching."
In just a few days, the team will head out to Europe for a preseason trip overseas. But before taking off, some spent their time Wednesday giving back.
"My players wanted to do this really bad because they understand what they went through and the people who really inspired them when they were at the same age, so any opportunity they could give back, they wanted to do so," Brooks said.
"I just want to tell them that you have to have a plan and you have to have goals," Cole said. "Don't let anybody tell you that you can't do anything. I just really want them to get that message and to carry it with them as they go on in life."