Monday, April 23, 2012

DERRICK GRIFFIN: The 50/50 Club!!!

DERRICK GRIFFIN: Class of 2013

Written by: Matt Malatesta & Prospect-Central

Derrick Griffin on the verge of a monster throw down!!!
There are many exclusive clubs in the world today. One of my personal favorites, Jay-Z's 40/40 Club. While this is indeed a high-end establishment frequently visited by many celebrities, anyone can get in, as its doors are open for all those willing to pay the high price of admission.  There's only one Club in the world today, so exclusive that not even Hova himself could get an invite...The 50/50 Club!!!

What is The 50/50 Club???  Why don't you ask 6-foot-7, 220 pound Derrick Griffin!!! Depending on what high school recruiting site you look at, you can find the Texas A & M commit ranked in the Top 50 in not only football, but basketball as well.  This is an incredible accomplishment that very few high school athletes have ever had the honor of achieving.  If Griffin can remain academically eligible, look for him to make an immediate impact on the court as well as the gridiron for the Aggies come 2013.

As of right now, Griffin appears to be a better prospect in football rather than basketball, but don't get it twisted, he still can hoop.  He's ranked in the Top 50 by Rivals & Scout and had an outstanding junior season playing for the Terry Rangers (Rosenberg, TX).  His athleticism alone helped him put up some big numbers for one of the best teams in Texas.  Griffin averaged 18.6 ppg, 10.8 rbg, 4.5 bpg & 1.9 spg for Terry High School and should put up similar numbers during his senior year.

Griffin has also been playing very well on the AAU circuit this spring for the 17U Houston Hoops squad.  This past weekend at the first session of the 2012 Nike EYBL, he averaged 11.0 ppg, 6.5 rpg & 4.0 blk bpg, while helping the Texas based team to a 4-0 record.  Griffin and the Houston Hoops next event is this up-coming weekend in Hampton, VA, at the second session of the Nike EYBL.

Derrick Griffin emulating Thomas "Hollywood" Henderson
On the football field, Derrick Griffin is considered one of the best wide receivers in the country.  He's ranked in the Top 30 from the Class of 2013 by Espn, Rivals, Scout & 247Sports and seems to be just scratching the surface as far as the type of player he can become.  Over the past two seasons at Terry High, Griffin has combined for 64 receptions, 1,004 yards & 20 touchdowns and should continue to play at a high level next year as a senior.

Derrick Griffin has said that if he had to choose, he would probably lean towards a career in basketball rather than football.  Ultimately that might depend on how much more he can grow.  As of right now he doesn't have the size to play Power Forward in the NBA and his perimeter skills need to catch up to his strength and athleticism.  Be that as it may, he has a legitimate shot to play either sport professionally and while he may be too young to "Pop A Bottle Full of Bub"...Derrick definitely up in "Da 50/50 Club!!!" * Below is a basketball highlight video from BallisLife of Derrick Griffin's junior season, an article from VYPE Magazine in September of 2011 detailing his life, a basketball video from GigEm247 of him playing AAU ball for the Houston Defenders last year, a football video from 247SportsStudio of his junior season and then a news story video featuring him from October of 2011.

Derrick Griffin is uncomfortable in the spotlight, but he’s the most prolific athlete in the city of Houston and possibly the nation. He has a smile that lights up a room, but rarely flashes it around strangers. The 6-foot-7 Griffin has had a transient childhood that may make him feel alone sometimes, but has dozens of adults looking out for his well-being.

Derrick Griffin says "Welcome to the gun show!!!"
Griffin is an NFL prospect with an NBA body. He was offered a scholarship as a freshman in high school by former USC football coach Pete Carroll, while having to tell Duke’s Coach K that he wanted to play both sports in college. Griffin is not rich, but has more frequent-flier airline miles than his entire junior class.

Derrick Griffin’s parents are not in the picture, but lives with his Great Grandmother Ozel “Aya” Grunwald who knows how to Twitter and has a Facebook (lol). She says that he eats all the time, but he’s always hungry.

Great Grandma knows best. Derrick Griffin is ranked No. 19 by in football for the Class of 2013 and is a Top 50 basketball player in the nation, but he is still hungry. That is what sets him apart.

Terry High School football coach Tim Teykl is as authentic as they come. He has coached at the college level for years, has developed dozens of NFL athletes and has a tremendous balance of firmness and love for his players. He’s been at Terry for 22 seasons, his wife Brenda is the school registrar and he’s one of several father figures in Griffin’s life.

“I’ve coached thousands of kids in my time and I don’t say this easily, but Derrick is in a class by himself” Teykl said. “Everyone thinks he’s a tight end because of his height, but his speed, size and length makes him a receiver. I'd like to see the Houston Texans' cornerbacks cover this guy. He's that good."

Griffin's football coach is not the only one to give him rave reviews.  Ahmard Vital of said, "His skills on the football field are phenomenal.  He's dominant on the edge and is a mismatch against most defensive backs, mainly due to his size. On top of that, his vertical ability is off the charts, which makes him unstoppable in the red zone. Combine that with strength, ball awareness and big, dependable hands, and you have the total package at wide receiver.”

Derrick Griffin wearing Jerry Rice's number 80
While Derrick Griffin's life may seem like easy street, anything could be further from the truth. If it wasn't for his great grandmother "Aya",there's no telling what may have happened to the Texas A & M commit. Aya is the undisputed matriarch of her family and at any time there may be three to 13 family members living with her. She started caring for Derrick at the age of nine, when his mother was sent to prison on drug charges.

“I’ve seen Derrick grow so much as a person over the past few years,” she said. “He’s never given me any problems and I remember him beating all his cousins in basketball in the front yard at an early age. He would cry when he would lose. He’s always been a winner. I’ve done the best that I can with him and his siblings."

Griffin brings his football persona to the basketball court, which has paid dividends for his Houston Defenders AAU coach Aaron Harrison and high school coach Michael Jackson.

“He just dominates the game with his athleticism,” Jackson said. “He’s 6-foot-7, he has a seven-foot wing-span, his vertical jump is off the charts and he’s unselfish. He’s a coach’s dream – a superstar who doesn’t big-time anyone. What’s scary is that he has gotten so much better over the summer with his footwork and body-control.”

Not only did Griffin enjoy a tremendous amount of success as a high school sophomore, he was also a member of the nation’s No. 1 AAU team – the 17U Houston Defenders.

“I’ve known Derrick since he was young, playing with my boys Andrew and Aaron,” Defenders coach Aaron Harrison said. “I’ve always treated him like a son, which is tough as they become teenagers. I’m not their buddy.  I have a spot in my heart for Derrick because I know where he’s come from. He’s had to learn to do everything for himself. I know what he’s done to try and make himself a better person and I’m tremendously proud of him for that."

Derrick Griffin straight up embarrassing a dude!!!
Coach Harrison also had some high praise about Griffin as a basketball player.  He went onto say, “On the court, he imposes his will on the game. I’ve seen a lot of basketball players in my time and he’s as good an athlete that I’ve ever seen in my life. (Los Angeles Clipper) Blake Griffin jumped over a car to win the NBA Slam Dunk Contest. I guarantee you Derrick Griffin could do that."

Even though he's a star athlete, Derrick Griffin is painfully shy around strangers.  Inside his inner circle however, he’s a thoughtful friend with a good sense of humor and a big smile. He has his own ideas of what he wants to do with his God-Given talent, but he’s also a junior in high school, who hasn’t much time to be a kid.

Derrick Griffin has the skills to play both basketball & football at the next level and that's exactly what he plans to do.  
“I really want to play both sports in college,” he said. “That’s my goal and I just want that opportunity. I love both of them equally. Its football right now and basketball has just faded away, but by the spring it will be basketball again.”  So, it appears in little more than a year from now, Texas A & M might just have it's very own version of the most popular two-sport athlete of all-time, Bo Jackson!!! Original Article.

No comments:

Post a Comment