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Blackmon brothers ready to embrace move to Marion

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Family hopes to resurrect Giant tradition of success

Tuesday, May 7, 2013 - 4:13 am

The imminent life changes for James Blackmon Jr. and younger brother Vijay loom prominently for the soft-spoken duo.

Soon they will be in a new school, surrounded by new people and suiting up for a new program in Marion.

The two of them are slowly getting used to it.

“It will be a different environment,” said combo guard Vijay Blackmon last weekend between games at the Bill Hensley Memorial Run-n-Slam at Spiece Fieldhouse. “But I will be ready when the time comes.”

When father James Blackmon Sr. came up from Marion to Fort Wayne nearly a decade ago to coach Bishop Luers, the boys “cried like babies” according to Blackmon Sr. Now, they are headed back to Grant County to play for their dad's alma mater.

“We didn't want to go (to Fort Wayne) then and it turned out to be a great decision,” Blackmon Jr. said. “Now, we kind of didn't want to go back (to Marion) and it will probably turn out to be a great decision as well.”

The duo will surely headline the rebuilding project that is Marion basketball after the program has endured four consecutive losing seasons. A community desperate for a winner will likely not have to wait long with the talent that Blackmon Jr. and Vijay bring to the table.

That talent was on display over the weekend at the AAU event in Fort Wayne. Blackmon Jr. exploded for 31 points in a semifinal loss in the 17U bracket as a member of Spiece Indy Heat. He showcased his pure scoring ability in the second half, hitting six of his seven 3-pointers in the narrow defeat.

Meanwhile, brother Vijay starred on the 15U Spiece Indy Heat squad, running the point for a team that advanced to the round of 16 in bracket play.

The brothers will in all likelihood be the starting backcourt for the Giants next season, with Vijay at the point and Blackmon Jr. at shooting guard.

But before that, both have goals to achieve during the summer AAU season.

“I want to continue to improve on defense and keep getting stronger,” said Blackmon Jr., an Indiana verbal commit.

While the changes will be plentiful for the Blackmon brothers, the one constant will be their dad, who coached them at Bishop Luers and will continue to do so at Marion.

“He does the best for us,” said Blackmon Jr. about his father. “He has already been where we have been, we just listen to what he has to say.

“It will be a good situation for us in Marion.”