Local basketball organization realizes there is more to basketball than just the court.
Oklahoma Christian University alumnus Brandon Troutman is the co-owner and director of operation and facilities for Solid Rock Basketball.
“We’re a Christian-based organization and we don’t hide from that,” Troutman said. “We surround everybody with coaches and people we believe have the same values and are going to portray the same characteristics on and off the court that we do. That’s a big part of who we are and what we do.”
According to Troutman, Solid Rock is providing an environment for youths and allows them to be kids and have fun but to also be surrounded by Christian examples in a positive atmosphere.
Troutman said Solid Rock is a basketball organization focused on working with young players to offer them the highest level of basketball development as possible combined with personal skills and character traits.
“I grew up in a Texas organization, Hoop Hunter Basketball, taking lessons and training similar to what we’re doing,” Troutman said. “Once I was in college I always returned during the summer to work for them. It became an important part of who I am and so I used that as a foundation to form Solid Rock.”
Solid Rock opened a 32,000-square-foot gymnasium with four full-sized courts on 15th Street in Edmond three weeks ago.
However, their first event as a basketball organization was a spring break camp this past March Luis Lopez, a senior on the Oklahoma Christian basketball team, helped with.
“They take a different approach to basketball camp than any of the other camps I’ve worked for,” Lopez said. “Each session opened and closed in prayer, which was really neat. After every segment the staff took the time to break it down with a tip for the kids to take away and help them.”
Lopez said Troutman acted as the Oklahoma Christian basketball team’s graduate assistant during Lopez’s freshman year. He learned from Troutman as a mentor and has trained with Troutman every summer since.
“He [Troutman] really took from what he learned with his mentor in Texas and implemented it in Solid Rock,” Lopez said. “I loved working a camp under his direction. He’s way beyond his years being this young and in this big leadership role with the big organization Solid Rock is.”
Lopez said Solid Rock is a close knit community, which allows the coaches to make more of an impact on the kids in their programs and camps.
“The big university camps that I’ve worked at are more-so money makers, but Solid Rock really emphasizes every little step that goes into it,” Lopez said. “They don’t skip over anything, which I think is really cool. The faith aspect that it’s founded on really sets it apart in that way.”
Troutman participated in Oklahoma Christian’s basketball program for six years; five years as an athlete and a year as a graduate assistant after graduating in 2013.
“Once you’re a part of the OC community, you know its family,” Troutman said. “Having teammates and coaches from Oklahoma Christian around to invest in what we are doing and for us to still be connected with them is pretty awesome. There’s nobody better than Coach Hays, he was at the forefront of my accomplishments in college. For him to now be over here helping us on a daily basis, it really means a lot.”
Former Oklahoma Christian Men’s Basketball Head Coach Dan Hays now serves as a lead instructor and court coach for Solid Rock, working alongside his former Oklahoma Christian player Troutman and Craig and JoAnna Wiginton, who Hays has coached with before.
Hays said his new responsibilities include working with players in the fourth through 12th grade on skill development in different areas of basketball.
“When I retired from Oklahoma Christian, in all the articles and TV spots I made the point very clear that I wasn’t retiring from basketball,” Hays said. “I no longer wanted to be a coach after spending 42 of my 48 years as a head coach, but I wasn’t going to move from where I lived. The opportunities to work other places were not explored and I didn’t know what would open up.”
Hays said Troutman is a wonderful young man who is highly qualified and holds tremendous basketball knowledge. Hays also said Troutman was a student of the game who improved every year and a starter for his last two years.
“I’m glad I can be a small piece of that puzzle,” Hays said. “Anything I can do to help them, I’ll do. I want to put them in the best place to continue growing. Solid Rock is a high-character, Christian-based organization that says basketball is important but developing a full person is more important.”
Troutman said the Edmond community needs a place like Solid Rock where families can take their kids knowing they are not only going to get the basketball experience they want, but also be in a positive, uplifting environment that reinforces values.
“There’s nothing in this area, maybe even this region that compares to the many years of experience the Wiginton’s, Brandon and Coach Hays bring to this organization,” Lopez said. “It’s only going to grow with tournaments, leagues and skill development. I’m excited to see, especially in my hometown, something like that pop up.”