Shawn Reid will be inducted into the Toledo City League athletic hall of fame next month. The 1983 St. Francis graduate was a team captain for the Knights basketball team that finished 27-1 and won the 1983 Class AAA state championship with a 58-49 victory over Akron Central-Hower in the final. It was Toledo’s first state boys title.
Any particular moment that sticks out in regard to the state championship season?
“I remember before the season started coach [Val] Glinka put up a big piece of cardboard and it had brackets on it and it had all the schools in the state of Ohio. At the very end of it, we were the last team standing and we were circled. He told us, ‘if you guys do everything I trust you to do, we’d be the last team standing.’ “
As a team co-captain, did you feel any added pressure to keep the team moving in the right direction?
“As the longest standing starting member of that varsity team, I was the catalyst. For that season, as the catalyst, I was the guy that didn’t take anything. I dove for loose balls. I was very aggressive defensively. I took a lot of pride in being a good shooter — which is what I was known for — but, honestly, my defensive game was better than my offensive game.”
Why did you only play basketball at St. Francis?
“I came into St. Francis from the West Toledo Lightweight Football League as a quarterback and a defensive back and when I got to St. Francis the freshman coach divided everybody up and said backs are over here and everyone divided into different positions. I stood with the quarterbacks and he said, ‘Son, the running backs and defensive backs are over there.’ I stood there and just the feeling I got I never came back for Day 2. That was the fist day of practice and I figured if they weren’t going to let me play the position I wanted to play, then I’m not going to play. I never came back.
“They never asked me why I didn’t come back but I can tell you that my intramural home room team, we won the intramural championship four years straight. I still have the trophies.”
It’s been nearly 30 years since St. Francis won a title. Can you explain its significance?
“I never had any idea that 28 years ago what we did would still have the longevity in people’s mind how good we were. All we wanted to do was to play hard for coach Glinka. He was a tough guy. He never cursed at us. He never belittled us. I learned more from him as a coach than any coach I’ve ever played for. He was the toughest guy I ever met in my life.”
Where do the 1982-83 Knights rank in Toledo high school basketball history?
“I think as a total unit as 12 guys playing together as a high school team we have to go down as one of the best [Toledo] teams ever. We didn’t have that superstar player and we didn’t have the superstar coach. We were hard-working blue collar guys. All of us came from working class families and we were a very eclectic mix of guys, African-American guys, Caucasian guys.”
What does being inducted into the City League hall of fame mean to you?
“It’s a great honor. I grew up in the DeVilbis high school district. I modeled my jumpshot after Truman Claytor and I modeled my tenacity after Terry Crosby and they’re both in the hall of fame. For me, to be inducted alongside guys that I idolized as a kid, it’s one of the greatest honors ever.”
What do you recall about playing at Furman?
“Furman played a very great nonconference schedule. I got to play against Michael Jordan, Sam Perkins, Muggsy Bogues, and Hersey Hawkins. Clemson is 20 miles from Furman, so I played against Horace Grant and those guys every season that I was in college.”
Your senior season nearly came to an end after being diagnosed with chicken pox heading into regional play. How did you deal with that?
“My mom took my sneakers because she thought I was going to sneak out of the house and try to go play the games. She gave me a transistor radio and told me the best thing I could do was listen to the games.”
When did you decide to play in the state tournament?
“Once the fever was gone I was playing in the state tournament. I played in a shirt underneath my jersey. I still had chicken pox all over me, but they weren’t on my face anymore.
“They were still all over my chest and arms but I didn’t have a temperature, so my mom let me play. There was no way I was going to miss those games. I came out incredibly fired up.”
The Knights’ only loss was to Bowsher, a team you would later defeat in sectional. Do you still think about that one loss?
“Dennis Hopson talks about that one loss and reminds me frequently about it. But he has the NBA championship ring and I told him I would trade the state championship ring for the NBA championship ring. That’s a tough decision to make, but I probably would trade the state championship ring for the NBA ring. He said he’d trade the NBA ring for the state championship ring. We go back and forth about it.”