The National Preparatory Association continues to follow through on the mandate to grow the league’s Western Conference and is excited to announce the addition of the Saskatoon Basketball Academy who will begin play in the 2018-2019 season.
This expansion becomes another historic moment for the NPA, as the first ever Saskatoon prep basketball program is born.
“The city of Saskatoon is one of the fastest growing cities in Canada and due to the diversity in the immigration of our city, the basketball community is pretty unique,” said S.B.A. Founder and Director of Operations Sean Tyson.
Tyson has been involved with the Basketball Saskatchewan provincial program for the last five years as a coach, and Head of Centre for Performance. He has seen the growth of the game in Saskatoon first hand and has been at the forefront of community involvement over the past twenty years. He founded the Super Six League, which brought competitive men’s basketball to the city during the spring time and enjoyed a decade of success. While at the grassroots level, his Greenwave United club program is the pre-eminent youth basketball program in Saskatoon.
“Both the men’s and women’s university teams (University of Saskatchewan) have won National Championships and have been consistently competitive over the last decade. Plus, one of the top FIBA 3X3 teams in the world hails from our city and we have just welcomed a pro franchise back to our area with the recent announcement from the CEBL. High level prep basketball is the logical next step.”
The former Clemson Tiger completed his NCAA career, and went on to play professionally, wrapping up his career playing for the Saskatoon Slam of the former NBL.
Tyson decided to stay in the city to raise his family and went into the business of training elite level players at the collegiate and professional ranks. But what brought him the most satisfaction, was seeing the younger generation apply his teachings and improve every day to reach their goals.
“It was important to recognize the opportunities that could be presented for these kids and it was imperative that we got this academy off the ground this year,” Tyson said of the post-secondary opportunities basketball can provide.
“I have done my research on this league and I’m proud of the leadership team and their vision. We are inspired by the NPA and the dreams for these kids are going to come true.”
Historically, the prairies are overlooked on the national basketball landscape but they can longer be ignored. Last season’s NPA scoring champion and league MVP Jashon Henry is a proud Saskatoon native who played for the Notre Dame Hounds of Wilcox, Saskatchewan. Henry’s strong senior season earned him a scholarship to Bradley University and his success has fueled athletes from his hometown who now see a path to post secondary education playing the game they love.
“The National Preparatory Association is excited at the opportunity to further solidify our league in Saskatchewan and help grow the game at the high school level in a province that has historically provided great support for basketball at the highest levels,” said NPA Commissioner Jason Thom.
SBA becomes the fourth NPA Western Canada team, joining BC Christian, Notre Dame, and Edge School.
“From the level of play I witnessed from Saskatoon-area kids in the league last season, I believe there are more diamonds in the rough to be uncovered and I hope they can use the NPA as a vehicle to reach their goals at the post-secondary level.”
Interested student-athletes can find more information and apply to the Saskatoon Basketball Academy, by visiting the official website, click here