Sunday, February 1, 2015
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

UCD sons of NBA fathers

Three UCD basketball players — from left, Tyler Les, Tyrell Corbin and Corey Hawkins — spent their childhoods looking up to fathers that played in the NBA. Wayne Tilcock/Enterprise photo

By
From page B1 | December 15, 2011 |

UC Davis basketball players Tyrell Corbin, Corey Hawkins and Tyler Les grew up like a lot of boys, playing basketball with their dads.

They learned how to pull up for a jumper, juke a defender out of his shoes or to stand up to pressure. Of course, they had one advantage that most children don’t have, an NBA dad.

“To me it was just normal,” said Hawkins, whose dad, Hersey, played more than a decade in the NBA. “Everyone else thought it was cool. To me, he was just … Dad.”

Corbin agreed, but added there were extra perks. His dad is Tyrone Corbin, who played in the NBA from 1985 to 2001 and took over as head coach of the Utah Jazz last season.

“He retired officially in 2001 when I was 6 or 7,” said Tyrell, a 6-foot freshman guard. “I really only remember Atlanta (’96-’99), but also his last year in Toronto because I really liked Vince Carter.

“Obviously you have guys you look up to. I was just blessed with the opportunity to meet the guys because of my dad being an NBA player.”

Aside from meeting sports idols and traveling, NBA dads gave the trio an all-access behind-the-scenes pass to the inner workings of what it takes to be successful on the hardwood.

Tyler was 4 years old when his dad, Jim Les, retired after eight years in the NBA, including several successful tours with the Sacramento Kings from 1990-94. Tyler was able to see some games but doesn’t remember a lot. However, he’s seen game films and it’s affected his play.

“I try to emulate his game a little bit,” said Tyler, a 6-2 guard. “I think he was a little quicker and better ball handler. He really hustled. His play, I really respect that, and that’s what I try to emulate.”

Tyler Les is averaging 8.7 points and 1.7 assists per game. In Jim Les’ standout ’90-’91 season with the Kings,  he averaged 7.2 ppg and 5.4 apg.

“He’s a lot better than I was,” said Jim Les, who is in his first year coaching the Aggies. “His mom said she’s taken back sometimes by his mannerisms on the floor. He does a lot of what I used to do, and the way he carries himself. I retired when he was at a young age, so it’s not so much from watching me. Some of those things are just hereditary.”

All three sons have similar stories of growing up, playing other sports, but falling in love with basketball. They all say they felt no pressure put on them by their parents. However, once they zeroed in on the basketball path, each player got similar advice from their fathers: be themselves.

Which isn’t really easy to do with a famous family name.

“He gave me insight into what I needed to do to prepare to play,” said Corey Hawkins, who is sitting out this season after transferring from Arizona State. “He warned me, and said ‘just be you, just play basketball, be a regular kid like everyone else.’ ”

Coach Les said: “When they’re playing the game their father played, people want to see how they do. From early on they are under a microscope so much more than anyone else. And they are so down to earth. They’ve handled that from early on, with the attention. They didn’t ask for it, but they handle it well. I think it’s a credit to them and their families in the way that they were raised. That NBA world and NBA lifestyle, and it’s almost like a fantasy. Here you have kids that are very well-grounded and -rounded.”

Corey, Tyrell and Tyler know the ups-and-downs of basketball life. They have seen their fathers work through it and learned from their example. Now, they are able to share their knowledge with their fellow Aggies, whose preseason has been mostly full of downs en route to a 1-8 mark.

“We can see things — not that others can’t see — but us three especially can see what’s going wrong and be able to fix it,” Hawkins said. “We know how to be leaders, and we can help the team.”

Jim Les added: “They are quality young men; they are very good student-athletes and they are very good basketball players. Nobody’s recruited them because they are NBA legacies. It’s an added bonus because we get some attention for our program. They’ve been around the game and bring a good understanding.”

Corbin and Tyler Les will take the court next on Saturday when the Aggies face UCLA at the Honda Center.

— Reach Kim Orendor at [email protected]

Comments

comments

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

    Well-loved library has services for all ages

    By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    The end of an era for The Enterprise, as pressroom closes

    By Kimberly Yarris | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Jewish fraternity vandalism classified a hate crime

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A1

    Man arrested after body parts found in suitcase

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    Islamists post beheading video

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

    More than a foot of snow possible for Midwest, Northeast

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
     
    UCD Med Center patient tested negative for Ebola

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Kudos to the Thomsons

    By Sue Cockrell | From Page: A3

     
    Arboretum ‘I do’

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    The story of Mark and Maria

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

    Summer lovin’

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

     
    Stories come alive at the library

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A8

    Stepping Stones supports grieving youths

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9Comments are off for this post

     
    Vote for your favorites in Readers’ Choice poll

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

    Japanese students seek Davis host families

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

     
    And bingo was the game-o

    By Tate Perez | From Page: A9

    Lee will speak Wednesday about city issues

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

     
    Training starts Tuesday for Jepson Prairie Preserve tour guides

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9 | Gallery

    Lecture looks at women in Egypt

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A9

     
    Tuleyome Tales: Searching for the elusive McNab cypress

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11 | Gallery

    Questions and answers about breast cancer set

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

     
    Davis Arts Center welcomes students’ work

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

    .

    Forum

    Help a veteran feel loved

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: A10

     
    Three old ideas going, going, gone

    By Marion Franck | From Page: A10

     
    How much drinking is too much?

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10

    They’re experienced and honest

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A12

     
    Toy drive was a big success

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A12

    One-way street solves dilemma

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A12

     
    Council, follow your own policies

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A12

    Ensure that you’re protected against measles

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A12

     
    Act would let patients control their own fates

    By Our View | From Page: A12

    Tom Meyer cartoon

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: A12

     
    Life goes on in Rutilio Grande, despite country’s gang violence

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A13 | Gallery

    Wi-Fi in our schools could result in health impacts

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A13

     
    .

    Sports

     
    Depth charge: DHS girls defeat Elk Grove

    By Spencer Ault | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Blue Devil boys lose on Herd’s buzzer-beating trey

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

     
    UCD women survive against winless UCSB

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

    Foursome will represent Davis at national soccer tournament

    By Evan Ream | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    UCD roundup: Aggies make a racket but fall to Sac State, Pacific

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

    Kings get past Pacers

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    Sharks blank Blackhawks

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

    .

    Business

    Doby Fleeman: Toward a more perfect Davis

    By Doby Fleeman | From Page: A12

     
    Ullrich Delevati, CPAs, adds senior accountant

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A12

    And the survey says: Success for Davis Chamber

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: A12

     
    Putah Creek Winery launches ‘Give Back Tuesday’

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A12

    Seminar will cover business challenges

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A13

     
    Japanese fondue dips into Davis scene

    By Wendy Weitzel | From Page: A13 | Gallery

    Novozymes, Cargill continue bio-acrylic acid partnership as BASF exits

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A13

     
    .

    Obituaries

    .

    Comics

    Comics: Sunday, February 1, 2015

    By Creator | From Page: B8