OTTUMWA — Jameel McKay found himself in a very familiar location taking in a very unfamiliar perspective last weekend.
After two years of playing at an All-American level for the Indian Hills basketball team, McKay made his return to the Hellyer Student Life Center last Saturday for the Reed Overhead Doors Classic.
There were several familiar aspects to McKay’s return to the arena he called home for the past two years. He walked in on game day, went down to locker room and even fired up the entire Indian Hills basketball team before they hit the floor.
This time, however, McKay wasn’t hitting the floor in his Indian Hills uniform and warm-up suit. He instead had to watch from the stands and off on the sidelines while the Warriors prepared for a top-15 national showdown with the College of Southern Idaho.
“It’s definitely a different perspective,” McKay said. “It’s a little tough to sit back here and not be out there playing. I miss it.”
McKay continued to look on Saturday as the 2013-14 Warrior basketball team had its most impressive outing yet early in the season, running away with a 122-87 rout of the visiting Golden Eagles. After pulling in 20 rebounds in an overtime loss to CSI last season, McKay was quite impressed with just how good his former team looks after just its fourth game.
“They got a lot of great contributions from the bench. They had the kind of shot blocking we didn’t have last year,” McKay said. “They’re going up and down. They got guards that can pass and score. They can create mismatches all around.”
It was impressive, but for McKay it wasn’t unexpected. Just as he promised he would at the end of last season, McKay has kept up to date with everything the Warriors have been up to even after graduating from the school.