There were some lessons on dribbling and passing and how to run a proper fast break.
There were some lessons on dribbling and passing and how to run a proper fast break. Shooting and lay-up drills were also part of the program.
But the week-long basketball camp at Countryside Christian Church that concluded Friday was about more than just the sport itself.
"Basketball is just a game," said camp instructor and former NBA player Luke Witte, "but it's a great game that can teach us about so many other aspects of life."
Witte, who played for the Cleveland Cavaliers from 1973 to 1977, has conducted the local camp for nine years. His connection to the church is Dan Muter, the church's senior pastor who saw Witte play while living in Cleveland.
As a division director for Marketplace Chaplains, a company that places ministers in corporate settings, Witte said he no longer has time to conduct the number of basketball camps that he used to, but he never lets his day job get in the way of the local program.
"I always try to fit this in to get away for a week," he said. "Plus, I really love working with these kids here. It's just great being here and seeing them grow and progress as basketball players and as people."
Witte, who played his college ball at Ohio State University, said he understands that most of the kids attend the camp primarily for the basketball. He added, however, that by the time the camp concludes, those kids have learned other valuable lessons that will serve them well off of the court.
"The thing that is so hard today is that we don't seem to want to work together," he said, "but the ability to work together as a team, regardless of what that team looks like, is huge. It's about being unselfish. It's about helping each other. This camp is more about life skills than it is basketball skills."
As for whether the kids seem in awe of playing in front of a former professional player, Witte said most of the kids "don't have a clue" he played in the NBA.
"The parents do, though," he said. "They are the ones who usually ask me about that."