Five questions with Joseph Willis, Bloomingdale High basketball coach
This week we chat with Joseph Willis, 37, boys basketball coach at Bloomingdale High School for the past four years. Last night, he took part in the school’s annual student-faculty basketball game. The game was part of a weekend full of activities to benefit Bell Shoals Beef ‘O’ Brady’s server Kim Camille and husband Roger, who was recently diagnosed with lymphoma for a second time.
Where did the idea for the student-faculty basketball game come from?
Before I came to Bloomingdale, I had heard about other schools having charity basketball games to support some great causes. So when I arrived here, I was really excited about rallying our students and teachers together to do something for this terrific school and community.
What are some of the organizations and people the game has helped in previous years?
In years past, proceeds have gone towards pediatric cancer and an organization called Lyrics For Life (formed by musical band Sister Hazel). Cormac McCarthy, owner of the Bloomingdale and Fishhawk Beef ‘O’ Brady's and ultra-supporter of our basketball and athletic programs here at Bloomingdale, recommended this group.
What are your goals for the Bloomingdale High basketball team next season?
Our goals are always to improve and work hard in everything we do. We are always striving to get better athletically, academically, and with our character. We were very young this past season and now these guys are more experienced. I expect a lot from them this coming season.
Who is your all-time favorite basketball player?
Michael Jordan. He reminds me of how I used to play (Students, take note). I'm kidding of course. I liked the entire Chicago Bulls teams from that era. Jordan, Pippen, Grant, Paxson — they all played as a team.
Who do you see meeting in this year’s NBA Finals, and who comes out on top?
I think the Heat are really good and should win it. The Spurs are also very good and have the edge out west now that (Oklahoma City’s) Russell Westbrook has gone down. I don't watch much NBA since I am a college guy, but I'm always impressed with how good those guys are.