The Next Dream

Olajuwon's sons to play basketball at The Village School in Houston

VYPE

Originally Appeared on VYPE

HOUSTON – In the West Midlands Region of the United Kingdom, the game of basketball is not the most popular sport. Not by a long-shot.

For NBA Hall of Famer Hakeem Olajuwon though, it was always a sport he wanted to see his sons pursue. In fact, the member of the historic Phi Slamma Jama-era at the University of Houston made a deal with his sons Abdullah and Abdul.

"Every time I'd leave them with a basketball, I'd come back in it would turn into a soccer ball," Hakeem, who spoke to VYPE in an exclusive interview, said. "Then we made a deal, once they tasted basketball they'd forget about soccer. So, I put them in a basketball club and a soccer club. After three months they forgot about soccer. I saw the passion, they started playing some games."

Originally when they moved to the UK, Abdullah admitted they had a passion for soccer. They had played it before, so they didn't mind.

With basketball becoming a viable option, Abdul admitted that once he played it, things changed.

"When we used to play soccer, I was more passionate than everybody," Abdul, who's favorite NBA players are Golden State's Steph Curry and Sacramento Kings' De'Aaron Fox, said. "But when my dad told me to forget about soccer, I really didn't believe it. But after I tasted [playing basketball], I didn't want to play anything else, I knew that was my passion."

With their love of basketball growing, Hakeem had to make a decision and knew moving back to the United States would be best for their basketball future.

"[Abdullah] is 15, if he doesn't come now, he won't really get a chance to catch up," Hakeem said. "So, that's why I moved them back here."


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VYPE

Originally Appeared on VYPE

Alia Williams is heading to Baton Rouge.

The Kingwood Park senior announced her commitment to LSU via her Twitter account on Thursday.

"I believe the environment and coaching staff at LSU is the best place for me to reach my potential as a well rounded volleyball player," Williams told VYPE. "I look forward to developing my volleyball skills and knowledge with the coaching staff and my teammates in Baton Rouge.

"This is a great opportunity for me. Playing at the next level, especially in the SEC, is a dream that doesn't come true for everyone. I am grateful to be given this opportunity and will continue to work very hard in order to live up to the expectations of my coaches and teammates."

Williams was a part of the historic Kingwood Park volleyball team in 2018 that claimed the Class 5A State Championship, becoming the first-ever Humble ISD volleyball program to win a state title.

This season, Williams has helped guide Kingwood Park to a 19-19 overall record and 9-1 mark in District 20-5A play. Williams has recorded 213 assists, 123 kills, 110 digs, 36 aces and 31 blocks so far.

On making the decision to head to LSU, Williams said it came down to relationships.

"Many factors went into this decision," she said. "However it really boiled down to one main point. Coach Fran has seen me develop from my 15's year up until today. She knows the player I was at age 15 and how hard I've worked to become the player that I am today. I wanted to play for a coach who knew the kind of work ethic I have."


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