LAKE TRAVIS, Texas (KXAN) — DJ Thorpe may just be a junior in high school, but on the court, there’s nothing junior about his game.
“He’s got a grown man’s body right now, for sure,” Lake Travis coach Clint Baty said.
So much so that during a practice earlier this month, when he went up for a dunk, he came down with more than just two points. Thorpe tore down the rim and shattered the backboard.
“Just like a normal dunk, and the rim just sorta came with me. All throughout the rest of practice, look over at it like, ‘I really did that. Wow,'” Thorpe said
“I think right after he kinda thought maybe I was a little mad at him. I wanted to celebrate with him cause I want him to do that on every play. It’s a pretty incredible feat for a high school player to do that,” Baty said.
“I asked my dad after, he said he can’t remember doing that ever, so it’s just a big thing,” Thorpe said.
And his dad had plenty of opportunities. Otis Thorpe played 17 seasons in the NBA, was an all-star in 1992 and a part of the Rockets’ 1994 championship.
“He’s the first person I go to after every game. He’s the first person I talk to after practices and stuff like that,” Thorpe said. “It’s really huge cause I know not a lot of people get that opportunity throughout any of their career to talk to somebody like that. And I get to do it every single day. So it’s great. He’s a great tool.”
DJ’s using that tool to turn into one of the biggest recruits in the 2019 class in Central Texas with offers from Texas A&M to top 10 programs like TCU and Virginia.
“It’s really been getting to know the coaches. Getting to know their programs. I don’t really have a wishlist, I just, I’m gonna gauge it off of who shows interest in me,” Thorpe said.
“We’ve had a lot of really good basketball players. We haven’t had a lot that have received high-quality division one offers like that,” Baty said.
And with another year of high school to go, rims all across Austin are on notice.