COURTSIDE WITH COACH EDMONDS: More bounce at Bishop Luers’ gym?

Does Bishop Luers’ gym floor give you more “bounce” than others do?

We have some outstanding gyms (or arenas) in Northeast Indiana and, in my humble opinion, it depends on what you like.

Some may prefer the vast open spaces of some of our schools gyms (3200-4000 seating) and others may prefer the coziness of a 800-1200 person seating environment. I’m not here to debate anyone’s choice of gym size because I’ve played and coached in them all and as long as the rims are 10 foot high and floor is 84 feet long, then my feeling is “Lets play!”

Nevertheless, one thing that has always intrigued me is when I hear players say “That floor has bounce” or “Man, I can get up off that floor!” Really? Are they just saying that, or is it actually true? Can the structure of a floor give you the ability to jump higher than others?

Being that I’ve never been called a leaper or a person with hops I couldn’t tell you if this is true or not. Now mind you, I have seen some remarkable dunks in certain gyms. I attributed that to the fact that those particular players just had that ability to do those things regardless of the gym. That being said, one gym that gets spoken of on a regular basis as a place to get your dunk on is the gym on the southeast side of Fort Wayne where the Bishop Luers Knights and Lady Knights play their games.

As a player, this was my type of gym with its old permanent stadium style seating and cozy ‘shooters background.’ I have always thought that their floor was well kept, and if you ask opposing teams or players that come into their gym, they’ll say there is something about their floor that makes you want to get out there and play.

The gymnasium at Bishop Luers High School

You know, it’s amusing to hear players that have NEVER dunked a basketball say “Coach if I get a breakaway it just might happen tonight.” My immediate thought is “Oh no, here comes a “Tragic Johnson moment! (It’s okay to laugh now.) Now granted, as I stated earlier, I’ve seen some remarkable dunks in Luers gym – including my son Chad’s first high school dunk, which was pretty special – but wouldn’t that have happened in ANY gym or does Luers gym REALLY have “extra springs” underneath it to elevate your ability to jump? Hmm…  

Being a coach, I just enjoy seeing players that have remarkable talent BE REMARKABLE.

If it’s shooting, passing, dribbling or anything else that separates you from the average player, I’m all in! If I’m  pressed to answer the question:  “Does the gym floor at Bishop Luers High School give you more bounce than any schools’ floor?” my response would be: it depends on the players.  Folks, either you’ve got it or you don’t, and I don’t think that the floor matters. But I’ll fall in line with many others that say “there’s something about that floor that gives me wings!” It’s all part of the mystique of Bishop Luers High School gym; so accept it and don’t argue!

Keith Edmonds is a 32-year veteran of teaching and school administration from Fort Wayne. He coached boys high school basketball as an assistant at Snider High School, North Side High School and was the head boys basketball coach at Elmhurst High School for 12 years, advancing to the Class 3A State championship in 2003. Courtside with Coach Edmonds will appear every Monday at Outside the Huddle. These opinions represent those of the writer. No opinions expressed on Outside the Huddle represent those of any of our advertisers. 

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