• Stephanie O’Hanley

Sharing his success: St. Lazare’s Charles Miller launches basketball camp


PHOTO COURTESY CHARLES MILLER

Charles Miller shares some of the basketball tips he’s gleaned from playing both locally and in the United States with some of his students.

He’s only 20 but St. Lazare resident Charles Miller has gleaned plenty of experience playing for basketball teams at John Abbott College, the SPIRE Institute in Ohio, and Upper Iowa University, an NCAA Division II school. This summer Miller will share his knowledge at a one-week basketball camp he’s organizing for youth ages 10 to 17.

A starter on the high school basketball team at Collège Bourget, Miller credits Coach Robert Cormier with improving his game. “I developed my leadership, teamwork and hard work and determination with teammates,” he said. “We’re really successful so I guess that shaped my career.” Moving from Bourget to John Abbott was a “big transition,” Miller said.

“I had to sit out a couple of games. The game was different so I had to adapt.” He said at first because his game minutes were “really low” he had to work hard outside of practice time to reach the required level. “We had a good season,” Miller said. “I played well and then I decided to move on.” He headed for the SPIRE Institute in Ohio, a college prep school that has a basketball academy. He’s just finished his freshmen year studying psychology at Upper Iowa University where he’s the first-ever Canadian to play for its Peacocks basketball team.

He says the only other Canadian at the school is a young woman who plays for the soccer team. “When I was a kid it was my big dream to be part of the NBA,” Miller said.” But now I’m 20. My mind is open. I kind of realize it’s probably impossible to play in the NBA. Those kids get recruited at 18, 19 (or) 20.” He figures he’ll eventually play basketball in Europe or overseas, for instance, in Australia. “For sure I’m going to be coaching.” Miller said along with basketball fundamentals, his camp will include lessons on the importance of teamwork, hard work and of pursuing goals and dreams.

“To me it’s more than a camp, it’s a lifestyle,” said Miller. He’ll share a quote he’s lived by for years. “I’m small, I’m not heavy, I’m not athletic… I used to tell myself ‘in some way, somehow, hard work is always going to pay off.’”

While other Quebecers play university level basketball for McGill, Concordia or UQÀM, in going to the States Miller said he chose something different. “It was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. “Now what’s good is I can come back here to Quebec and share my knowledge with kids,” Miller said. “That’s why I’m doing basketball camp because what I’m doing right now is something special. It’s not something that many Quebecers can say they’ve done, especially basketball.”

Charles Miller’s Basketball Camp happens at Collège Bourget from June 29 to July 3, 2015.

Cost: $250 for the week (daycare and private lessons cost extra). Registration forms are available online – a link is available via the camp’s Facebook page.

For more information, call (514) 629-3768.

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