He’s 6’9” tall. When Bobby Quayle (pronounced “Quail”) was in grade school in Mt. Pleasant, he was always the tallest kid in class. That’s one of the reasons he commands attention and respect. The other reason is people instantly like him. He has charisma.
Bobby Quayle was a basketball star in Mt. Pleasant from 1990-’93, earning all-conference and all-state honors. Then it was off to Augustana, a Division II college in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, on a basketball scholarship. He played there two years and then transferred to Iowa State, a Division I school, to study Landscape Architecture. He decided to sit out the first year (he would have had to anyway), play intramural ball and concentrate on studies.
During his second year, Bobby participated in walk-on tryouts for Iowa State’s basketball team. Tim Floyd was the coach, and Iowa State had an excellent team. (Tim Floyd would go on to coach the Chicago Bulls.)
Being raised in rural Trenton, Iowa, Bobby learned the principles of hard work, perseverance, and faith from his parents. They had an uneven basketball court and, in the winter, Bobby would go out and scoop the snow off and shoot baskets in his heavy snow boots. The stone surface was rough and every once-in-a-while a sharp corner would ricochet the ball off in another direction. Bobby learned to adjust and still make the shot.
So, when an assistant basketball coach at Iowa State told Bobby he had some good news-bad news, Bobby was prepared. Iowa State wanted him as a walk-on, but there were no openings. (The ball goes shooting off to the side. Will he make the shot?) This was okay with Bobby because he didn’t think he could keep up with the rigors of Iowa State’s basketball program and the requirements of his studies. Besides, he met Hope, who was also in landscape architecture, and would eventually be his wife. (He made the shot—he had Hope!)
Upon graduation, Bobby and Hope were off to Chicago, where they would hook up with an international company that sent them to Morocco. Their intention was to oversee the management and design of properties that were being developed there. However, the business collapsed, and they were halfway around the world with no job. (Ding! The ball goes shooting off to the side.) But Bobby was playing pick-up basketball. To make a long story short, Bobby wound up playing professional basketball in Morocco for three years. “Why not do something you’re good at and you enjoy!” (Ding!) They had three children.
They came back to the states and Bobby was an assistant basketball coach at Central College in Pella before they took off for Cyprus where they joined the company they work for now: Global Sports Partners (GSP). While in the US he also picked up his Master’s degree in Coaching and Athletic Administration from Concordia University at Irvine, California. GSP organizes sports development projects all over the world. At the last count, they’re in 22 different countries doing everything from soccer, to American football, baseball, basketball and adaptive sports. They teach life as well. Sports has the ability to break down barriers, whether it’s cultural, racial, political or ethnic. GSP’s three driving principles are (1) Improving Performance, (2) Increasing Participation, and (3) Inspiring Purpose. Bobby Quayle is in his element. He has a passion for teaching the game of basketball and mentoring coaches to see the opportunities that the game has in teaching character. Bobby believes and lives a quote attributed to John Wooden and others that, “Basketball is about more than basketball.”
Bobby’s father recently passed away, and Bobby came home from Cyprus just in time to see his father before he passed away. He’s helping his mother get things in order and will be in Mt. Pleasant until mid July. If you want a little pick-up game of basketball or just to catch up, his email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Bobby can play either center or power forward, but prefers power forward – where he has more vision.
Have a good story? Call or text Curt Swarm at 319-217-0526, email him a email@example.com or visit his website at www.empty-nest-words-photos-and-frames.com