Even at 6-foot-8, Phillip Kee has often felt himself disappearing at the end of the Ellison bench.
Despite his sheer size, the Eagles senior post usually doesn’t see the court much unless it’s in mop-up duty with Ellison’s guard-dominated scheme.
But a lack of action hasn’t inhibited Kee’s drive to play the game, this year or in the future.
“I’m ready to go to the next level of basketball,” Kee said.
Kee will get his opportunity to do just that after signing committal papers to Schreiner University, a Division III program in Kerrville, during a ceremony inside the Ellison library Wednesday.
“I’m excited,” Kee said. “It was a big relief. I was just waiting for this day to come, that way I wouldn’t have to worry about it any more, or think about it.”
Kee said he chose Schreiner over North Western Oklahoma State because of the program’s small-school dynamic and mathematics department.
“I think I’ll be a new person to the team, but I’ll fit right in,” Kee said. “But even though I like to play basketball, it’s also about the education. Looking into the school, I was also looking into how many kids per class and if they have my major, so that played a big part of my decision.”
At Schreiner, Kee will play under former University of Mary Hardin-Baylor assistant basketball coach Jimmy Smith, who took over as head coach of the Mountaineers last year after three years coaching alongside mentor Ken DeWeese at UMHB, his alma mater.
Kee credited his strong family support system and his various coaches along the way with helping him stay dedicated to playing college ball.
“I’m just doing it for myself, because my parents always told me if I wasn’t doing it for them, do it for myself,” Kee said. “(I don’t want to) cheat myself out of anything.”
Despite not having a lot of film from his high school career, Kee made his impact as a wing for the ATX McKnight club basketball team out of Austin.
“My coach, coach McKnight, was a really big help, seeing as I only played with him for one year,” Kee said. “He just never gave up and he always pushed me to get to my full potential.”