A few days after making his decision to continue his basketball playing career at Mary Hardin-Baylor, former standout Forsan guard Kobe Richardson was named to the West Texas All-Decade Team.
“I was happy about it and I really liked it,” Richardson said in response to being named to the list. “I think that that’s a pretty big deal and there are a lot of great players on that list and being named to it is a great honor.”
Richardson scored over 2,000 points during his high school career and was a superb threat from beyond the arc. He spent last season as a redshirt on the Howard Hawks and will now be moving on to his next college stop in a couple months.
“Richardson was one of the area’s best players and perhaps the best 3-point shooter,” the article announcing the All-Decade Team said. “He scored 2,065 points in his career, and nearly half of them came from long range as he knocked down 341 3-pointers. As a junior, he had 117 of them, which was sixth in Texas and 21st in the nation, according to maxpreps.com. Richardson was the Offensive MVP of his district as a sophomore, then won back-to-back MVP awards. He averaged 21.3 points, 4.8 assists, 5.9 rebounds, 5.3 steals and 1.1 blocks as a junior, leading Forsan to a 29-5 record and a spot in the regional semifinals. As a senior, he averaged 23.8 points, 6.1 rebounds, 4.8 steals and 3 assists to earn All-State honors.”
Being recognized as one of the best players in all of West Texas over the past 10 years is a great accomplishment. Another unique wrinkle to Richardson’s story is the fact that he was coached by his father, Forsan coach Cory Richardson, while growing up. Cory has had a frontline view of the work his son has put in over the years and he was very happy to find out that Kobe had made the All-Decade Team.
“I thought that he may have been deserving but to actually see him on there it was very neat as a dad,” Cory Richardson said. “As a Coach, it’s good to have one of our players on there. I coached against a lot of the people on the list so I know how good they are. It felt good to see one of our own on there and my own son on there.”
Now, the younger Richardson will be suiting up as a Crusader this winter under a coach who has a similar style to the one he played in at Forsan. He should be able to earn some time on the court during this upcoming season if he can show his long-range shooting ability and relentless effort in practice in front of his new teammates and coaching staff.
Following years of having his father coach him while growing up in Forsan, Richardson will now enter his second season playing under a new head coach. Having your father as a coach can put a lot of pressure on the player but Kobe knows that a big part of the reason he was so successful in high school was because of the high standard his father kept him to on the hardwood.
“He pushed me everyday and I think he really made me be the best player that I possibly could be,” Kobe said.
Cory added, “Knowing his desire to be above average and to be great and the amount of work he was willing to put in, I may have pushed his buttons a little bit. But he put the work in showed on the court.”
One of the most memorable moments from Kobe’s playing career at Forsan was a last-second shot that he hit against Christoval during the first-place district tiebreaker his sophomore year. Like most times when the Buffs needed a shot the most, Richardson would find himself wide open for a three-point shot. In this game, he sealed the win with the corner three and it is a game that is remembered fondly by the father and son combo more than three years later.
“There was a lot of great memories but that one was probably the best,” the elder Richardson said.
After not playing in competitive games outside of some practice scrimmages last season while at Howard, Richardson is looking forward to getting back on the court with his new teammates. He feels like he has learned a lot over the past 12 months playing alongside “some of the best athletes” that he has ever seen in his life. The sharpshooting guard has been working on driving through the lane and adding a new wrinkle to his offensive arsenal.
Forsan is still looking to get back to the level that they played at while the local hero was suiting up as a Buff and the younger players are surely watching old film of Richardson when he was lighting up the scoreboard every night.
Kobe Richardson left a mark on Forsan basketball that will not soon be forgotten. The high-scoring, high-energy baller will now be playing at the NCAA Division III level and is ready and waiting to show the Crusaders, and all of their opponents, what he has got.
Shawn Moran is the sports writer at the Big Spring Herald. To contact him, e-mail email@example.com or call 432-263-7331.