Katie Foos, gave NEW YORK UNIVERSITY a verbal commitment last night. I could talk about that commitment today. I could tell you how NYU is one of the best schools in the country. I could tell you it’s one of the best D3 programs in the country, that they play to win national championships. I could tell you the games at NYU are exciting and the crowds at times are massive. I could tell you that NYU, is coached by one of the best around. While today is a great day for the Katie Foos and her family; today is a teaching day. Today you will learn it’s tough people that last… rather than tough times. Today I will give you a lesson on what to do when you are dismissed by others. Today you will learn what WILL POWER IS ALL ABOUT.
COACH LAUREN HALL GREGORY HAS BUILT A POWERHOUSE
I remember going to watch an AAU game Katie Foos, was playing before her freshman year. She was knocking down jumpers and rebounding like a demon, off the bench. But for some reason she was replaced in the game. I was surprised and her AAU coach said that the girl ahead of her was just having a bad day. I said ‘shouldn’t playing time be based on performance?’ Katie Foos, has found out that reputation some times is more important than anything else. It’s been something she has had to deal with, every step of the way, on her journey to NYU. Katie Foos is one kid who can honestly say….I got here and nobody ever made my journey easy. She can say, I’ve had to overcome labels and been at times held to a higher standard than my peers….and I still made my dreams come true.
I watched Katie Foos shooting as a sophomore at the Hoop Group. Her release was lighting quick and at 6ft, I thought OMG this kids is going to have a major impact off the bench for RFH. But all I heard for people was that her shot was too slow and her feet where too slow. I remember thinking are people watching what’s going on with this kid. So Foos’s sophomore year was much like her freshman year. She was dismissed and not given much credit for her improvement. You see labels die hard once an opinion is formed. If people say something long enough it becomes the truth, if your not careful. It looked as if Katie Foos had all the negative labels and they were not going away. But for some reason Katie Foos keep grinding away and trying to shake those labels. That spring after her sophomore year, she moved to the insanely talented Masonious Belles. In the Belles, Foos found a group of girls who did not believe the labels. She found a coach in Ellen Masonious who would really give her a chance to shine and show the labels, were wrongfully attached. That summer I saw the Belles play and Katie was more than just a shooter. She defended, rebounded and passed. Katie Foos was doing this against the best competition, AAU had to offer. I remember thinking anyone saying this kid is just a shooter….. is clueless.
Last season was a break out year for Katie Foos, but if the truth be told, she had to wonder if that breakout would ever come. You see labels die hard and reputations and not production sometimes determine playing time. Sometimes the squeaky wheel gets the playing time…Katie Foos was no squeaky wheel. I remember speaking to her mother Kathy, I told her, “your daughter is going to play a big role for that team” Her response surprised me, she said “all I want is for Katie to get a real chance in a real game”. She knew that if Katie got a chance, she would prove her value. In the very first game of the year against #2 Manasquan, RFH was struggling and it looked like Manasquan would run away from the Bulldogs. But enter Katie Foos in the 2nd period, the same Katie Foos a year earlier, who could’ve never dreamed of hitting the floor so early in such a big game. All Katie Foos would do is put the RFH team on her back with 8 points and 2 big threes. She helped RFH put Manasquan on their heels and it appeared Katie Foos had finally killed all the labels in just one quarter. But she would soon find out labels are hard to kill. She barely played in the 2nd half, she became a ghost because reputations some times mean more that performance. But Katie Foos had her moment and her mental toughness would carry her until her next chance. The next chance came two nights later against eventual state champ SJV. On this night, Foos again was special as on three different occasions, she made three’s to either tie the game or put RFH ahead. No question after playing the best two teams in the state and stepping up big time, Katie Foos surely had killed the labels….she was wrong. Despite her 12 points and 3 rebounds against SJV, Katie Foos was still considered just a nice kid, happy to get on the floor. She got more time, but getting time in the meat of games was up and down. There were games she was lucky just to hit the floor….FOOS had simply seen this picture too.
As her junior year season rolled along, something happened for Katie Foos, RFH needed her. For the first time in her career Katie Foos was needed more by her teammates that ever before. Yes there was those who still tried to label her. There also were some heart breaking moments, like college coaches coming to watch her, only to see her ride the bench. It was in these times KATIE FOOS HAD TO LEARN HOW TO SURIVIE. There were those who continued to say she was too slow, weak on defense and was just a shooter…BUT KATIE KNEW… NONE OF THE ALL LABELS WERE TRUE. She was got tired of all the labels and decided enough was enough. She took all her frustrations out on all those labels. She kicked them around, she made the labels look silly. Katie Foos based on performance could’ve made a case, she should’ve been in the starting lineup in the middle of the RFH season. Because here is what Katie Foos did from January 30 to February …17 ..11..6 ..12..14 and 18 point games …and those games included state top 10 Notre Dame (11)and NY’s St. Joes (18). It was finally clear Katie Foos had finally beat the labels. But it was the it was mental toughness that really shined though in the CENTRAL GROUP 2 CHAMPPIONSHIP GAME. Despite these monster performances, Katie Foos found her self riding the bench against Manasquan in one the biggest games of the year. She could have sulked and screamed out loud, how can this be happening, why is this happening. I beat the label, shouldn’t I least get a chance? She did get that chance, because after riding the bench the entire game. With RFH down three, she was entered the game, for their final play in regulation….and boom, just like that Katie Foos hit a game trying three at the buzzer. HER WILL WAS TOO STRONG FOR THE LABELS TO SURVIVE.…she proved reputation and being the squeaky wheel may get you time. But performance matters also…
THE GAME BALL FOR PRINCESS FOOS!
So Katie Foos is going to NYU, but you must understand, she has had to overcome more than any kid I have ever seen. Her parents refused to play the political games, even when they knew she could have benefited from doing so. It would have saved a lot of tears, fears, anger and disappoints. They refused to make excuses for their daughter. They refused to let her take the easy way out. They gave her the environment to get better and let her do the rest. They’ve only wanted one thing, every step off the way….DON’T TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THIER CHILD’S KINDNESS and lack of drama. Just because Katie Foos has never been part of drama, did not mean she cared any less. It simply meant that she just wanted to be treated fair along the way. That has finally happened, Katie Foos will be starting for RFH this year. She will be one of their leading scorers…nobody four years ago could have ever dreamed this could have happened, the odds were just too stacked against her….so were the many labels…but she refused to let the labels crush her dreams.
There is something special about all the FOOS KIDS. They all mature late, their nice kids who are NOT dying for your attention. They don’t ask to be treated special and they are all sooooo respectful. Sometimes it’s too easy to dismiss and take advantage of such kids. Their dad, Dr. Foos, has never said one word, about how at times, both his daughters were overlooked. But every time a kid gets a injury or needs surgery he is there. I have called Kathy Foos a dozen times, asking if she could call her husband and ask if he could see a injured player on short notice….he has never said no. I have walked into his office, in dying pain, only to have him take care of me. He is a TRUE GAINT IN HIS FIELD. There is nobody and I said nobody, I would ever trust more with a player I love more than Dr. Foos, he is batting 1000%… its kind of hard to beat that. Their mother Kathy Foos, is fire and believes there is nothing earned that doesn’t come from hard work. Katie has needed her mother Kathy Foos for one major reason. She needed somebody who could paint the picture and help her live the dream. Kathy is not afraid to speak her mind, when her children are not being treated fairly. She has seen too much of over the years. She knows being respectful and doing the right thing should not work against a kid. She protects her kids in her own way. She knew that at times her daughter did not always get a fair shake during AAU or High school, but she refused to allow her to use it as an excuse for failure. She made her points, and then taught her children to move on after doing so…..NOW KATIE FOOS IS MOVING ON AS IN TO NYU….She will move on to NYU with all those labels left behind for some other kid…maybe…just maybe…their is a kid who will read this blog and know….LABELS DON’T HAVE TO STICK, JUST ASK KATIE FOOS!
CONGRATS TO KATIE FOOS…GOOD KIDS DO WIN FOLKS
FALL PRE SEASON TRAINING DATES ARE NOW UP….. http://hoopgroup.com/hoop-group-headquarters/weekly-basketball-instruction-programs/