Leaving it on the Floor

Charli Collier reflects on her career at Barbers Hill and her future

Collier has a long list of accomplishments, including a McDonald’s All-American selection.

Where do you start when you talk about Charli Collier?

There is the laundry list of career accomplishments – McDonald’s All-American, Naismith All-American First Team, WBCA High School All-American, 2018 Morgan Wooten Player of the Year Finalist, Jordan Brand Classic selection and Naismith National Girls High School Player of the Year Finalist.

Then there is the off-the-court impact Collier has had in the Barbers Hill community since arriving there as a freshman. The role model she serves as to young women in the community and really the Houston area.

Collier did it all in her four years at Barbers Hill High School.

“The impact I’ve had on my school and my community, people look up to me as a role model like I’m something important,” Collier said. “I’m just grateful to be a person someone can come to. It’s more than basketball. I feel like I’m out here making history.”

On the court, Collier was someone teams had to always be ready for and try to slow down.

In her four years, Collier amassed 3,539 points (1,265 scored this past season), finished with 1,408 rebounds, 216 assists, 339 blocks and was a 57.7-percent shooter from inside the arc and 32.9-percent shootout outside of it.

“I think about when I first came here my freshman year and I look how I did my senior year,” Collier said. “I was a completely different player. My body type was different, my style of play was different, my shots I took were different. Everything about me from freshman year to this year was different. I would just describe my game as improved.”

When Collier walked onto campus in 2014, the goal was to of course win a state championship.

Collier’s team never did that, but the list of team accomplishments are what she is most proud of.

Barbers Hill won 126 games with Collier on the roster; the Lady Eagles captured three District 21-5A Championships going a combined 63-3 in district play.

Once in the playoffs, Barbers Hill didn’t disappoint.

In the past four years, the Lady Eagles exit the playoffs earlier than the regional quarterfinals. In 2017, Barbers Hill advanced all the way to the state semifinals.

“I can say that over the years there were other good things that had happened not just for me but for our team,” Collier said. “We accomplished so many wins, district titles, made it to regionals and never got stopped early. I look back and I don’t have any regrets about anything that happened throughout my years.”

With her high school career officially in the books, outside of a few all-star games and All- American games she will play in, Collier can now look towards Austin.

Collier will be joining the Texas Longhorns next season and is ready to continue her athletic and academic career on the 40 acres.

Heading to Austin for her freshman campaign, Collier said is like her freshman year at Barbers Hill. The senior continued
saying when she arrives at Texas no one cares what you did in high school, what you were ranked or how many awards you received. It’s a fresh start.

Past Texas there are the goals of making Team USA and potentially getting drafted into the WNBA for Collier, but she knows if she doesn’t put in the work now none of that will ever come.

“My biggest goal right now is getting college-ready,” Collier said. “Everything else will follow. If I do that, if I get college-ready, then I will do everything else. National Championships will come, Team USA, WNBA all of that is in the long run. I know I want to do that but right now I’m just focused on getting college-ready.”

With her time at Barbers Hill done and as she took time to look back, there was one final question to answer.

What do you hope people will remember the most about Charli Collier?

“A lot of people say how humble, kind and genuine I am,” Collier said. “I just hope people remember me as someone who was always hardworking no matter what I did. In the classroom or the basketball court. Someone
who was there for other people when they needed help; a motivator, a role model. I just see someone who made a huge impact on Barbers Hill.

“I hope the community knows that when I put on a Barbers Hill jersey I was playing for them. I’m playing for my family, my team and my coaches. I just hope people remember me as someone who was always hardworking no matter what I did when I stepped onto a Barbers Hill court.”

This article appears in the March Issue of VYPE Magazine. Pick up your copy at any one of our locations next week!

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A WEEKLY REVIEW OF CRENNEL'S COACHING

Now my job: Texans feast on Lions

Photo by Getty Images.

Thanksgiving is full of tradition. There's the typical family gathering, large meal, and of course, football. Sometimes, new traditions are added and old ones are retired. I think the Texans did both in their impressive 41-25 win over the Lions in Detroit. Old traditions were carried on (Lions losing on Thanksgiving), some were put to rest (Texans not being able to get turnovers), and new ones were started (multiple passing touchdowns by Deshaun Watson in six straight games).

The fact that this defense got three turnovers in the game was unbelievable! They got all three in the first quarter within the span of eight plays. JJ Watt's pick-six was insane. He went for a batted ball, ended up catching it, and ran it in. They forced Jonathan Williams to fumble on the Lions' very next play from scrimmage and recovered it. On the Lions' next possession, the Texans recovered yet another fumble after the challenge was reversed. Great call by the coaching staff to challenge and win. The defense looked good. Tyrell Adams stood out because he was in on those two fumbles, made 17 total tackles with 14 of them being solo tackles. They also brought pressure that seemed to make Matthew Stafford very inaccurate and resulted in four sacks. I give defensive coordinator Anthony Weaver credit for knowing he needs to blitz to get pressure, but the run defense has to improve.

The offense kept the tempo up in this game as well. The spread and hurry-up were used to keep the Lions already staggered defense off balance. Knowing the Lions were without a couple defensive backs, I thought it would be the perfect marriage of their defense and the Texans' offense. A buddy asked before the game about the line (Texans -3.5) and the over/under (52.5). I told him bet the Texans and the over because neither team can play defense and both have good quarterbacks. Offensive coordinator Tim Kelly put together another good game plan and Watson executed it flawlessly. One route combo I saw later on in the game I particularly enjoyed. Two receivers were tight to the left side. Cooks ran a hook/curl and settled in the middle of the zone while Fuller ran a vertical route. Duke Johnson ran a swing route to that same side. It left Cooks wide open as the attention went to Johnson in the flat, Fuller deep, and the action to the other play side. Route combos are important because it gives the quarterback different reads as he goes through his progressions and lets him pick apart the defense based on what he sees. Combine that with Watson's play and the way Kelly has changed his play calling now that he's liberated from he who shall not be named, we're seeing a beautiful thing.

As good as things were, there's still room for improvement. The defense gives up way too many easy yards, both run and pass. They can't get pressure bringing only four and will often give up big plays if the blitz is picked up. Plus the run defense is still an issue as evidenced by the Lions' first possession of the second half. The Lions ran the ball 10 plays straight for a total of 58 yards on that drive. Utterly ridiculous! Watson was good (17/25 318 yards and four touchdowns), but he missed two more touchdowns with passes slightly off, and continues to hold onto the ball too long at times. The difference between these two issues I've presented here is the fact that Watson has so played well, his "issues" are minor and very correctable, while the defense is terrible and there's no easy fix in sight. But let Romeo Crennel and Anthony Weaver tell it, they're getting the most out of these guys and they're playing disciplined.

The thought that this team may actually creep into the playoff picture may take shape better after next week if they can beat the Colts. I doubt it, but it is getting interesting. Let's see what else happens around them because they need help getting there.

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