Preface by Janx
Cal Bruton, one of the greats of Australian basketball, recently visited Adelaide as the special guest speaker for the Free Throw Foundation’s Lunch. Free Throw Foundation is an organisation right up Cal’s alley, as it is all about supporting disadvantaged athletes to participate in the sport.
During the visit Cal and I caught up. Something we’d been talking about doing for a couple of years. Someone with Cal’s depth of knowledge, experience and just general attitude to life is someone I really enjoy talking to, asking questions and learning from and so gratefully took up the opportunity spend time with him.
I also really enjoyed his commentary when featured athlete Isaac White had played the U of Washington Huskies in 2016, before heading over to Stanford, in the Pac 12, as a student athlete. After the game we reached out to each other through a mutual friend and Cal was one of the people whose evaluations we listened to, and trusted, on this young man.
VIDEO: Isaac White and Sydney University Vs U of Washington. Performances in this game and vs UCLA as a 17 year old helped Isaac's cause to get to Stanford. Along with Cal's commentary in the game.
Spending a few hours with the former Wichita State student athlete, who would go on to be one of the first inductees into the NBL half of fame, is entertaining, thought provoking and educational. His passion for the game is beyond doubt and he and his family, particularly his son and current Assistant Coach with the Brisbane Bullets, CJ, have truly impacted the sport on macro and micro levels over decades.
PICTURED: Cal went to Wichita State. A program that has recently emerged from mid major power to high major program, consistently ranked in US College Basketball. Here is Cal with Gregg Marshall (HC Wichita State) on a recent visit to his old school.
PICTURED: CJ Bruton, also one of Australia's/NBL's great players is now an Assistant Coach with the Brisbane Bullets.
Throughout our conversation the common themes were that basketball is more than a game, it’s a vehicle to the betterment of oneself in areas such as personal resilience and teamwork. He is particularly passionate about helping young, indigenous, and African, Australians and financially disadvantaged communities and groups. His programs help youth develop holistically, and he tries to f