Former college basketball star helping Chicago kids learn life lessons on and off the court

Chicago's Very Own

He’s a former college basketball player who says the game has shaped his life both on and off the court.   Crediting his childhood mentors for his experience, Tim Brennan is now giving back to the next generation offering a youth camp for kids. 

Brennan’ s mind and body were made for basketball. He’s been playing it most of his life.

Chicago’s Washington Park District gym is one of old stomping grounds.  So it made for the perfect place for him to host hundreds of kids for an all-day basketball camp.  

 “What they are learning is that basketball is more than just a sport, it’s a tool for you to meet people, to engage to learn how to interact, how to problem solve,” he said.

Brennan played varsity basketball at Western Michigan University.  Today, he works as a professional basketball development specialist.   And although he’s not a professional, he says you don’t have to be to benefit from the skills of the game.     

 “We tell them a lot of people do go professional in something other than sports,” he said. “And that the connections you make here today or in the future as a result of basketball will allow you to enhance your life.”

Brennan developed his basketballs skills starting at the age of 8 with the Sonny Parker Youth Foundation. The former basketball pro is the father of NBA player Jabari Parker. 

Earlier this year Brennan launched a nonprofit organization called Operation Basketball.   His first event, dubbed “Hoops for the Hungry” offered free basketball camps for teens at three locations across the city.      

The students learn to hone their basketball skills while also hearing from the pros about life on and off the court. 

 “If I wasn’t giving back, I would definitely feel like I was missing a piece of myself,” he said

Tim Brennan he is one of Chicago’s Very Own. 

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