A Brand new hero for a brand new season

That’s Kellen Brand, basketball standout and all-star babysitter, saving Gabby from certain fall during a recent cookout in Boone. Gabby’s boyfriend Carter apparently is none too thrilled. Or maybe just jealous?

The family recently got together with some Mountaineers and friends to bid farewell to ASU assistant basketball coach Ahmad Smith. He’s headed to Ireland for a head coaching job. He and his wife, Teresa, were the guests of honor at a small cookout at local park.

I didn’t, at first, have my camera out, so I missed three great shots, including:

– Two sets of players on opposing picnic benches focused on Big G, who stood between them. At one table, Brand was offering potato chips if he’d come his way. At the other, there were waving cookies. Big G would start toward one, hesitate, turn, then start toward the other, hesitate, turn, repeat. Finally he just ran to me.

– Gabby and Carter, with foam fingers on, chasing Brand around the shelter.

– Kellen finally corraling Gavin and having him in his lap at the table.

Now that’s how you foster a cheering section.


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