Sports Basketball

Barrie basketball camp led by former CIS players

By Stephen Sweet, Special to Postmedia Network

The Next Level Hoops camps will take place in Barrie in August. SUBMITTED

The Next Level Hoops camps will take place in Barrie in August. SUBMITTED

There’s something to be said about learning from those who have done it before.

That’s a big part of why Next Level Hoops is so successful.

Now entering its third summer in Simcoe County, the basketball camp operates at a high level thanks to those in charge.

“The six of us that are directors and involved with the hands-on (aspects) all played CIS basketball and a few of the guys had really outstanding careers,” said Scott Seeley, who has worked with the camp since its inception.

The list includes Dan Eves, the former Barrie North standout who was a two-time CIS all-Canadian for York University, St. Peter’s all-star and Western University’s all-time leading scorer Brad Smith and OUA all-stars Seeley and Jeff Rosar.

“We had Kyle Julius (who trains NBA and European professional players) in last year and he said that there are very few camps in Canada that have the number of guys with the resumes we have,” Seeley said.

Seeley and the other directors want to show the campers, who will range from grades 5 to 12, the right way to do things.

“The reason we got there wasn’t because we were six-foot-eight, naturally gifted athletes,” Seeley said. “We got there because we spent lots of time working on our game.

“Through that, we’ve developed and understood the techniques you need to use and the skills you need to have in order to play at that level.”

Given that the oldest of the directors is around 30 years old, they’re all still in shape to not just teach the skills, but demonstrate them as well.

“We’re all fairly young guys, although I guess that’s relative, so we’re not just telling guys what to do,” Seeley said. “We can show them what to do and at the speed to do it at.”

They’re also pretty good at keeping order and explaining things out, as their day job requires.

“All six of us are teachers as well, so I think that helps us in our ability to get our message across to the kids,” Seeley said.

While Next Level Hoops isn’t yet a community staple like Thunderhoops, a camp that the directors all have great respect for, it has steadily grown in each year of existence.

As a result, Next Level Hoops has added a second week this year.

“We also ran some spring sessions for seven Sundays at Bear Creek and had 50 kids for that,” said Seeley, who also mentioned that they have a similar plan for the fall.

The second summer session will be open to both girls and guys for the first time.

“There were some girls asking about it and now we (have the numbers) to do both in the second week,” Seeley said.

The campers abilities are expected to range anywhere from house league to those looking to play post-secondary basketball.

“We set up the groups by age, talent and gender, so competition shouldn’t be a problem,” Seeley said.

They’ll all learn some special moves, although Seeley is aware that some of them won’t be quite up to that level yet.

“Along with the basics, we’re trying to give them some of the advanced footwork and advanced one-on-one skills,” he said. “The morning is basically skill development, a lot of the things they’re going to need, and we expose them to higher-level techniques.

“Even if they’re not there yet, it’s something they can strive to as they get older and stronger,” added Seeley, who also said that the afternoon allows for some scrimmages.

Next Level Hoops runs its first session from Aug. 5-9 and the second (co-ed) one from Aug. 12-16 at Georgian College.

You can find more information and registration online at

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