Saturday, March 23, 2013
Bryan Narcisse's return to the CSRA couldn't have gone much better.
The former North Augusta Jacket and Clemson Tiger turned Harlem Globetrotter was sure to put on a show for his friends and family.
Now known by his stage name of B-Nice, Narcisse couldn't help but feel a sense of pride the moment he passed the South Carolina border. In fact, it was such a special moment to him that he tweeted out a photo to his more than 3,700 followers.
"It's surreal, I mean, I played at Clemson, but Clemson didn't play many games in this area," he said. "Obviously, I was representing North Augusta and the CSRA while I was there. And now I'm representing them on a bigger scale with the Globetrotters. For the Globetrotters to come back to my hometown, I mean, what more can you ask for to get an experience like this?"
It was also the first time that Narcisse was on the hardwood at James Brown Arena.
"I walked around it, I mean, I've seen lots of things going on here, including graduations and football games. I've seen everything in James Brown," he said. "But I've never actually played a game in here. It's my hometown, but it's a little bit different with all of my friends and family here."
Narcisse also brought quite the crowd to the arena, including past coaches from rec ball to high school, classmates, teammates and family. One of those included North Augusta High School basketball coach Al Young, who coached Narcisse from 2004-08.
"It was exciting to see him out there, and anytime you have former athletes who go out and do some good things or great things, you're always excited about that," Young said.
"I'm just so happy for him. He was always a good kid, he always had ambition and goals and always was a hard worker. I always use him as an example as someone who came into the program, worked hard, kept his head straight, had goals and ambition, and I think it has paid off for him."
The theme for the Globetrotters' tour is "You Write the Rules," and it gives the audience the chance to vote for what rules the team will play under for each quarter. The first three are voted for online before the event, with the final being a live vote in the arena.
For the first quarter, fans chose the four-point shot rule, which lets each team shoot from a designated area for four points. Narcisse made three in a row, and a fourth bounced off the rim.
In the second quarter, fans chose double points, which led to two monstrous dunks by Narcisse. The third quarter's rule was two balls for the first two minutes. In the fourth, the fans chose once again to go with the four-point shot.
Global Select, the Globetrotters' opponents for the evening, tied the game in the fourth at 108 before the Globetrotters sent fans home happy with a 116-108 win.
Of course, the game was full of fun moments that brought fans to their feet and smiles to their faces.
Narcisse, however, was the center of attention for most fans.
"Obviously, playing at North Augusta, by far one of my favorite home courts in high school," he said. "Playing in college at Littlejohn, by far one of my favorite courts. And for a team that's on the road a lot, I actually get a place to call home for me. And this is it. Professionally, this year I've played in Oklahoma City's arena, Dallas, San Antonio, but the hometown is still at the top."
As someone who graduated from North Augusta, the fact that Narcisse is able to come back and give to the community speaks volumes about his character, Young said.
"I think that's the whole deal, that you go out and do great things," he said. "If not your community, then in some other way so that we can continue the cycle of giving to young people. I think that's the big deal, to help young people see through this whole process of life. Just to be able to go out and live a good life, as far as being a good person, taking care of your families and being a good citizen and doing the right things."