Tyler Relph was coming home this week.
He figured since he was already going to be here, why not teach some hoops.
So, Relph called fellow McQuaid alum Anthony Iglesia. Two days later, East High was lousy with the sound of bouncing basketballs.
The Relph/Iglesia camp was free to all who could attend and drew nearly 150 basketballers: young and old, male and female.
“Tyler and Anthony wanted to keep it in the heart of the city so that any child that wanted to come could make it,” said Anthony’s mom Karen Iglesia.
Relph is one of sport’s top coaches. His students include NBA stars like Marcus Smart and Julius Randle. He teaches all over the world.
He wants to make sure “the world” always includes Rochester.
“I know what the city is dealing with. I know what these kids deal with every single day,” Relph said. “Any time I can get here and give back, I am going to. People gave to me so I’ll never be, at any point in my life, where I can’t give back to the community that gave to me.”
Anthony Iglesia is heading to Washington next season, along with Isaiah Stewart. While Stewart will play, Iglesia eventually wants to be a coach.
Learning from Relph is as much an opportunity for Iglesia as it is for his campers.
“I’m just really humbled that I get to be with a trainer of this caliber,” Iglesia said. “Its not every day that someone reaches out to you and asks if you are willing to put on a free clinic for your own city. Just to be a part of this is something special.”
Teaching a free camp is something Relph only does in his hometown. Even with the incredibly agreeable price, Relph was left speechless and thankful by the turnout from Rochester with only 48 hours notice.
His workouts are intense. He pinballed from camper to camper providing as much individual attention as he could. Relph finished with a trademark dribbling exhibition.
Both Relph and Iglesia made sure the learning went beyond basketball. In fact, the message was not to believe in any limits.
“Don’t let people tell you what you can and can’t do,” Relph said. “Understand who loves you and who wants you to be great. Understand there is a way out.”
“Be different. Separate yourself from others.” Iglesia said. “Find something you love and you’ll never have to work a day in your life.”
You’ll even be ready to volunteer time to do that job on your vacations home.