Sports

A Basketball Brotherhood: The Three Weatherspoons

By: Tyler Greever - WJTV - Basketball is simply in the Weatherspoon bloodline.

Quinndary Weatherspoon, now a freshman guard at Mississippi State, led Velma Jackson High School to three straight state championships as a four-star recruit.

Nikolas Weatherspoon, a four-star recruit getting attention in his own right, is an attacking junior guard currently starring for the Falcons who won two of those titles with Quinndary.

Brandon Weatherspoon, the youngest of the three, is a lanky shooter of a guard as a freshman for Velma Jackson.

Their basketball playing days all started when Quinndary and Nikolas were in middle school while Brandon was in elementary school.

"My mom bought us a basketball goal outside so every day when we got out of school, we just started playing outside versus each other," Quinndary Weatherspoon said. "Oh those games used to be so competitive like they would bring the whole neighborhood out just to watch us play sometimes."

"It was kind of like a game crowd and they always used to just boost it up and it would get worse and worse," Brandon Weatherspoon said.

"I know some nights, my mom stopped the games to try to get everybody to leave," Quinndary Weatherspoon said.

"A lot of people used to come and it was just crazy and they said there were three of us and that ain't usual," Nikolas Weatherspoon said.

They used to get pretty physical too, with the oldest Weatherspoon toughening up the younger ones.

"I remember he would just be pushing me around and he would never always just shoot," Nikolas Weatherspoon said. "He would go up under the rim and just bully me all the time so he's always just been bigger than me."

"Quinndary always used to push me on the ground," Brandon Weatherspoon said. "I used to bust out crying and he used to pick me up, tell me to get back up and push me again."

Their pickup games helped them get better and better. Soon enough, they were playing in gyms against older players to keep improving. As they got older, they noticed their playing styles on the court were similar to the people they were becoming.

"While we're at home, I'm very laid back, I'm very chill," Quinndary Weatherspoon said. "And Nick is very loud at the house so it kind of leads to the court and with me being on the court, I really play laid back and Nick is really aggressive on the court."

"I'm not really just smooth," Nikolas Weatherspoon said. "I'm like real competitive in everything I do so that has to do with some of the personal things."

"Brandon is totally different than me and Nick," Quinndary Weatherspoon said. "He does the most talking, he's the loudest one out of all of us, he talks the most noise on the court."

"I just communicate, ask for the ball," Brandon Weatherspoon said.

The three different personalities often competed against each other, even off of the court.

"They were always just competitive in grades, on what food they ate," Tommie Weatherspoon, the father of the three, said. "I always noticed that out of them early. It wasn't just sports they were competitive in. It was everything they went after."

So once they all got to high school, Velma Jackson head basketball coach Anthony Carlyle started trying to coach three competitive and contrasting players.

"I think it's tough on me to deal with all three," Carlyle said. "Quinn is easy to deal with. He's laid back and won't talk as much and Nick is the same way he plays on the court. Aggressive, relentless. Sometimes, it's the same way he is off the court so you have to try to make sure to keep him under control. And Fat (Brandon), he just talks a lot and I just want him to be quiet because he hasn't done enough to prove himself yet to talk as much as he does."

Since Brandon is just a freshman, he missed the title run Quinndary and Nikolas went on together. The two helped lead the Falcons to back-to-back state titles in 2013 and 2014.

But Nikolas could have been a part of the third one, the first Quinndary won in 2012.

"He could've had three state titles actually because Carlyle wanted him to play in his eighth grade year," Quinndary Weatherspoon said. "He decided not to for which reason I don't know, he never told me."

"See, I thought I wasn't going to be able to play my senior year," Nikolas Weatherspoon said. "But they say I was scared. So that's not the reason."

"But it was exciting to win two state titles with him," Quinndary Weatherspoon said. "It showed me a lot, that he was ready to play and yeah, we can do this."

Nikolas, who was more of a role player on those two title teams, had to take over the starring role once Quinndary left for college. The oldest brother never had a doubt his younger brother could do it.

"Coming into this year, I knew Nick could handle the pressure because he can score," Quinndary Weatherspoon said. "All his life, he's been scoring so it wasn't a big deal about him leading the team."

"It's been hard," Nikolas Weatherspoon said. "I had to get in the gym a lot because I knew what I had on my back."

It didn't hurt to have his brother's advice either.

"He said you got to be smart," Nikolas Weatherspoon said. "You got to see the whole court, you got to see the guys running their lanes. He taught me a lot."

"I mean, we try to hang out as much as we can," Quinndary said. "We really can't hang out as much ever since I went away and went to college. But while I'm at college, I try to stay in contact with them as much as I can, ask them how their games are going and things like that and stay in contact with them."

Between the basketball and recruiting advice, they still squeeze in some sibling trash talk.

"Every time me and Q (Quinndary) talk, I talk about how I was better in high school and all that and we talk about who's going be the best and all that," Nikolas Weatherspoon said. "Of course it's going to be me, so."

"I'm always going to say I'm the better one just because," Quinndary Weatherspoon said.

But Nikolas only has Quinndary to follow up. Brandon gets to follow them both.

"I have to deal with it," Brandon Weatherspoon said. "I have to survive or get eaten. Nick talked to me about it and said I got to go hard."

"Right now, I think he's just a spot-up shooter like I was in my ninth grade year," Quinndary Weatherspoon said.

"He's just like Q," Nikolas Weatherspoon said. "He's a shooter and I think he's going to develop some more."

"I got to start working on going to the hole and catching and shooting a little more," Brandon Weatherspoon said.

"I think it shows him he has a lot to fill and things like that," Quinndary Weatherspoon said. "And I know that seeing what we accomplished, I know he'll want to try and put in the work to be a D-I player one day."

Maybe he'll end up just like Quinndary. The Mississippi State freshman returned to Jackson to play with the Bulldogs at Mississippi Coliseum, the building he raised those state titles in, on Dec. 23. He got to help Mississippi State pick up its second straight win before relaxing to celebrate the holidays, and his mom's birthday on Christmas, with his family.

"To get all that together is like one big present for me and I'm very happy to see him," Tommie Weatherspoon said.

"I give it to my dad," Quinndary Weatherspoon said. "He said we got it from him and my dad didn't play basketball, he played football so I really don't know how we got basketball skills."

However they got them, they've helped create an unforgettable experience.

"Man, it's fun," Nikolas Weatherspoon said. "We get to help each other, we get to tell each other our weaknesses, and it's just fun because we know all the things we have to go through. The main thing is for the little brother, we just help him out with everything so he won't make the mistakes we made in high school."

"It's a lifetime achievement to play basketball with my brothers," Brandon Weatherspoon said. "I know it won't happen again."

"I think it means a lot," Carlyle said. "But I still think they're young and sometimes you just live in the moment and you don't understand the significance of things at an early age. But I think years down the line, when they get a chance to look back on it, I think they're going to really appreciate what they were able to do together."


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