Brandon Calhoon Brag Board
“I remember watching Brandon playing for Beaverton when I was in elementary school. He was the first Beaver that I can remember wanting to beat. When I shot every day in the driveway, I pretended to score on Brandon, and then it was James Ruhle.”
– Derek Fillmore, Meridian High School
“I am ecstatic that Brandon is going into the Beaverton Hall of Fame. In my opinion, there is no singular athlete from Gladwin County more deserving. What Brandon meant to his team and his town during his tenure playing varsity basketball for Coach Johnston and the Beavers, was as impactful as any athlete has ever been. What Brandon did, especially during his senior year, will never be duplicated and his legacy is stamped forever because of those individual and team accomplishments.
Having played with and against Brandon, dating back to the mid 1980’s, I have witnessed, first hand, his dominance on the basketball court. But if you were to ask me what stands out the most about his basketball career at Beaverton, it wouldn’t be one singular game, it would be his entire senior campaign. What he did during the 1991-1992 basketball season is something I have never personally seen since and in my opinion will never be seen again. What he accomplished is extremely hard to believe and almost seems super-human. Brandon finished the regular season (20 games) averaging 28.9 points per game, which won him the Bay City Times scoring championship. As Brandon entered the district, which was the most loaded and talented district I have ever seen Gladwin or Beaverton compete in, the odds to win it seemed difficult for any team. The path to that championship was riddled with teams like Standish, Gladwin and Oscoda, who all had all-state/future collegiate players and were 17, 18 and 19 win teams. When you added Beaverton to that mix, it was the toughest district I’ve seen in northern Michigan in 25 years. What Brandon did over the course of that three week, was as good as it gets and nothing short of amazing. He proceeded to score 30+ plus in all three games, put his team on his back and essentially became “unguardable” as they took on and beat a very talented Oscoda team for the district championship. Having scored 30+ in all three games obviously continued to drive that 28.9 ppg season average above 29 by the time the district was over. As they entered a difficult regional with Petoskey and Kingsford, he was up against two more teams with all-state standouts and significant success during the regular season. As Brandon and the Beavers did away with Petoskey, Brandon, once again, topped 30 points in that game and moved them on to take on a tough Kingsford team. As they lost a heart breaking game by a point to Kingsford, Brandon fought through more double teaming and scored another 30+ in that game. Having averaged 28.9 through 20 games, then scoring 30+ in five tournament games, Brandon’s season average drove itself well over 29 points per game. For the season, he scored somewhere around 725-750 points. That average and total is absolutely unbelievable in high school basketball and those records will undoubtedly hold up as long as we are on this earth. But it goes beyond that…he didn’t do it on a bad team. He did it on a team that won 20+ games and was a layup from the quarterfinals. He was about team success first and was able to do things we have never seen in our towns in order to get his team, and ultimately his town, to a successful place most never see.
Brandon’s skill set was what drove all of his success. He combined incredible athleticism with outstanding fundamentals. He could dunk on you one possession and then make a strong mid-range jump shot on the next. He could knock down a three one possession and then run the point on the next and initiate the offense. When you combine that with his size, he became a freak of nature and an unstoppable force during his career. I am fortunate to have spent so much time with him competing against one another in an incredible county rivalry, going to camps in the summer together, being 3-on-3 teammates and now, life long best friends. Looking back, I am so proud of what he did for his team and his town, and now, I am proud to see him continue to be incredibly humble about his accomplishments. His humility alone is truly something young players should model themselves after. Congrats on your induction, my friend. You deserve this great honor so much!!
– Billy Shellenbarger
“I was only two years younger than Brandon but he was the guy I looked up to when it came to Beaverton sports. He was our version of Benny Rodriguez (Sandlot). He was the kid who hit long home runs in Little League and the first and only guy at the time who could dunk. I’ll never forget standing in our packed gym as Coon stole the ball at half court, dribbled down the right side of the floor and dunked on Gladwin as the crowd erupted. I have great memories of getting done with my JV games and watching Brandon score at will with his size, speed and that patented high release. He was such a match-up nightmare for other teams because as a 6’4 point guard he could beat you from anywhere on the floor.
I am proud to call Coon one of my best friends and as someone who has loved Beaverton Basketball my whole life, I appreciate what he means to our long tradition.
In regards to his music career, I want to make sure everyone knows that I taught him how to snap his fingers when we were little kids at a Calhoun Park softball tournament! LOL!
Congrats Coon! Woody loves ya!”
– Shad Woodruff
“Playing basketball with Brandon was a lot of fun. Brandon was such a prolific scorer. It didn’t matter if he was wide open or had someone right in his face, he was scoring the ball. Not too many players can say they averaged 30 points for an entire season, Brandon can. I always joke that Brandon and I would combine for 36 points a night. The punch line is, he scored 30 and I had 6. Brandon was not only a great basketball player, but he is also a great musician and most importantly a great friend. He is well deserving of this honor. Congratulations Brandon!”
– Michael E. Bassage
“I had the privilege to grow up with Brandon and played basketball with him since 6th grade. He was the best player I’ve ever played with or against. His size, sweet stroke, & ball-handling skills made him a nightmare match-up for whomever had to guard him. Our senior year he had one of the best statistical years in BHS history, capturing all-conference, all-region, & all-state awards. He also lead our team to the Jack Pine conference title that year, along with winning the Gladwin district championship.
Two memories that stick out:
1) Our junior year, Brandon lit up the Flying G’s with 40+ points in leading us to another victory over our cross-county rivals. Gladwin came out of the locker room to the song “Thunderstruck”, which happened to be one of Brandon’s favorites at the time. By the end of the game, the entire Gladwin team had been “thunderstruck” by Coon & his career best game!
2) Our senior year, we had great match-ups with Standish-Sterling. They beat us on their home court on a last second shot. When they came to our place, it was our turn. We were down 1 and Coach Roy Johnston drew up a play in the huddle. My job was basically to set a pick for Brandon & stay out of his way. I will never forget setting a good pick, watching Brandon move around that man to head across center court, and then KNOWING that he was going to nail the winning jumper, which of course he did! We went on to beat them again during the districts, this time in overtime.
Congrats to Brandon – you truly deserve it and I’m so proud of you!”
– “Night Train” Wayne Walts II
“I was glad to hear about Brandon being inducted into the Hall of Fame this year. He was always such a driven team player. He was so graceful and had such a sweet shot. It was like money in the bank when the ball was in his hands. But the best part about Coon is his way with the young kids that looked up to him, he always made time to give them attention even after the big games. Brandon is, and always will be a Beaverton guy, and he is proud of it. No matter where he is or what he is doing he always shows people respect and is such a class act. He’s not afraid to wrap his arms around any of his friends and flash that huge smile. Brandon, Beaverton is proud of your accomplishments and adding you to the Hall of Fame is our honor and I’m proud to share the wall with you.
Congratulations for this well deserved honor.”
– Dick Woodruff
“Congratulations Brandon on your entry into the Hall of Fame. I know that your heart was big for Beaverton when you were a player and that you continue to show love for your hometown through music. You’ve brought great pride to the community through your play and career. Great job!”
– Scott Govitz
“What I always admired about Brandon was the fact that he always had a great work ethic and always prided himself on being a role model for the younger kids who looked up to him. Coon comes from a family with a great athletic background and it’s no surprise that he accomplished the success he did. It was common to see Brandon with a ball in his hands, whether at the gym or dribbling down M-18 to and from his parents house.
I appreciate that Brandon has never forgotten where he comes from and consistently shows respect to Beaverton and the old timers that came before him. I’ve known Brandon his entire life and even though he is quite a bit younger than me, I consider him a good friend.
Congratulations Coon, welcome to the Beavers HOF, you deserve it!”
– Bob Woodruff
“Coaching against Brandon was a chore, he could shoot, pass, and defend. He was a great teammate and represented Beaverton High School with class! Above all else Brandon was a great young man. A real rockstar then and today!”
– Bill Chilman
“On the court, Brandon was the perfect blend of size, skill, and athleticism. He was a pure scorer. Off the court, nobody worked harder. Brandon would regularly be seen running, dribbling his basketball down M-18 from his house two miles south of town to the gym. If he wasn’t running to town, he was relentless with drill work at home. The heat and humidity in July or the sub zero temps of winter never stopped him. He was out there. Working. Free throw after free throw, jumper after jumper, he prepared to win, and his record reflected that.
I’ll forever remember the battles with Billy Shellenbarger and the G’s in the Old Barn, fans packed to the rafters, five deep on the baselines. I’ll never forget “the dunk”, Da Boots, or those damn Flivers. He was a trendsetter, he was a Captain, he was a role model…he was a winner. He was one of us…and still is. When you think of Beaverton Basketball, it’s impossible not to think of Brandon Calhoon. Congratulations my friend, nobody deserves it more.”
– Jason Brown
“The toughest assignment of my high school career – easily the best high school player I ever played against. Very appropriate that he enters the HOF! Congrats!”
– Casey Heckathorn – Harrison Hornets ’94
“Congratulations! Brandon was the most talented Basketball player that I ever played against. We had a few Beavers v Comets battles.”
– Brett Haring – Coleman Comets ’93
“Brandon Calhoun…aka Coon daddy…The Hizle…where do I start with this guy….there was no one more cool when I was growing up! We rode the same bus and I remember he would walk on with….Air Jordan warm up pants, AC/DC tee shirt, a little mullet, a basketball in one hand and an electric guitar that had a girl in a bikini on it in his other hand…..I mean come on! Obviously basketball has always been huge in Beaverton, but Brandon made it cool! He gave us a lot of exciting moments, but the dunk against Gladwin and the winning buzzer beater against Standish at home will always be etched in my memory! I’m not sure if the ol red barn had ever been louder! Then there are the scoring numbers… averaging just under 30 a game is impressive, but to do when everyone in the gym knew who was getting the ball… that’s really impressive! Coon had great teammates, but when we had to have a bucket, the other team knew who was taking the shot. When he brought the ball up and made a little move at the top of the key and pulled up for a soft jumper at the free throw line…you could not guard it. And all those district and regional wins…thanks for the memories Hizle! In the bigger picture, when I think of Brandon a rare mix of two words come to mind, Talented & Humble. His talent on the hardwood and his music on stage is an envy of many but his ability to spread his positive, humble vibe to everyone he is around might be his best talent. Congrats buddy on being inducted into the Beaverton Athletic HOF…It just got a lot more cool!“
– Chris Goerge