LaFayette senior Corey Boston’s work ethic takes center stage in playoff run
It’s hard to think about the LaFayette boys’ basketball team without thinking of senior point guard Corey Boston.
Boston has been on the varsity team since he was an eighth-grader, getting pulled up at the end of the year for the area tournament and the first round of the 2A playoffs.
Boston is one of the 11 seniors on the Bulldogs’ roster. Those 11 guys have been together through almost every part of their lives, as they all grew up together. Boston and some of the other players learned how to play basketball together, as Boston’s father taught them the ins and outs of the game when they were in elementary school.
“It’s [playing with Boston] been really good. I really don’t want it to end, because he’s like my brother,” senior Tae Burton said. “It’s been a good run and I’ve enjoyed playing with him.”
Boston has been one of the Bulldogs’ hardest workers throughout his high school career. He constantly is finding time to work on his game, whether that is at 6 a.m. on New Year’s Eve, before school, after a game or practice. There have been times that head coach Obadiah Threadgill has been forced to turn off the gym lights to make Boston go home. His last class of the day is PE, which is taught by Threadgill, so he gets shots up early and works on his craft during school.
To start practice, Threadgill wants his players to make a certain amount of free throws on both goals. Boston was the first one done and was done so fast that Threadgill didn’t believe him at first.
“Why would I cheat myself? [Threadgill] you know I want to be great,” Boston replied.
Alongside the physical aspect of the game, Boston makes sure he is mentally aware of everything.
When you have a conversation with Boston about basketball, he is able to recall games and stats from various points of this and previous seasons. After the team’s win against Sacred Heart, he broke down the Bulldogs’ last four years of playoff history, who they lost to and by how many points.
“When I played AAU this year, coach [Gerald Ogletree] told me that noticing the little stuff and remembering the little stuff will help you be a better point guard and a better leader,” Boston said. “That stuck with me, so I try and remember all the small stuff and the statistics that people that won’t want to pay attention to.”
As the point guard, Boston calls the team’s offense, and Threadgill lets him since Boston knows the best way to attack the opposing team’s defense. That comes from Boston’s diligent film study.
“I know what the other team’s defense is going to be like, so I know what to expect for the next game,” Boston said. “When they run something, you already know what you should go out there and run. To be a good point guard, you should be a step ahead of the game.”
Throughout the day, Boston is constantly watching film. Whenever he has time during school, Boston watches film, whether that is on his own or in Threadgill’s office. After practice, he watches film at home. He watches film a couple of hours every day.
“I have a couple of free periods during the day, so sometimes I’ll come to the gym and watch film. If I’m not doing anything in PE, then I’ll be in here watching film,” Boston said. “If I’m not doing anything at home, I’ll just watch film. That’s what it takes to be at the next level.”
With all the time he’s spent working on his craft, Boston has spent a lot of time with Threadgill. The two have a special relationship that not everyone forms with one of their coaches.
“It’s just an unexplainable relationship other than a father-son relationship,” Boston said. “I’m so thankful to have him around and have him as a coach and have that relationship with him. You don’t really get that personal with coaches like that. This relationship is amazing.”
The pair talk throughout the day, whether that is at school or when they’re both at home.
“Anyone who knows me knows that I have a daughter and I don’t have a son. If I did have a son, Corey is probably who I would want to pattern him after,” Threadgill said. “He’s smart, tough, hard-working and committed. He’s a high-character kid. With that recipe of ingredients, how can you lose?”
Boston’s dream is to move on from LaFayette and play college basketball. Threadgill believes he can play beyond college.
“I tell all the college coaches, I think he’s going to be a pro,” Threadgill said. “If he goes through college healthy, with how hard he works and how much he loves the game, I think he’s going to be a pro. You’re not going to out-think or outwork him. He’s just ready for the big moments.”
The Bulldogs play on Monday in Birmingham at 4:30 p.m. CT.