Posted On: 11/10/17 5:43 PM

DAN UNRUH:  ELIDA H.S.  ’18    #33

About 6 years ago, I was working a summer basketball camp watching a group of kids run through a series of evaluations/drills.  Most kids are at the camp because their parents signed them up for a “week-long babysitting program with an emphasis put on  basketball.”  I noticed that there was one kid going so much harder than everyone else, diving for every loose ball and just competed his hardest in every drill.  You could tell that this kid wanted to be good at basketball and was going to take every bit of coaching he could get in this week-long camp.

I went over and I introduced myself to this young kid who then told me his name was Dan Unruh. He told me, “I used to wrestle but I think I’m going to play basketball next year in 7th grade and I don’t want to just make the team, I want to be a starter.”

At this point, Dan wasn’t the most talented kid in the camp but he had a drive and a work ethic that a coach would like every one of his athletes to have. I then told him about the NW OHIO AAU program that I’m involved in and how we could help make him a better player while playing against some tougher opponents.  Dan took advantage of this opportunity and every year he added something to his game.

Fast forward to high school and Dan found himself in the varsity rotation early in his high school career and by the end of the sophomore season he was putting up some solid numbers and becoming the number one option.

His junior year, he led Elida in scoring at 17.3ppg and also led Elida to the regional finals before falling short to Wauseon.  Dan earned 1st Team All-WBL, 2nd Team NW District, 2nd Team All District 8, and was named Honorable Mention All-State.

Now, Dan is approaching his senior season at Elida and has been working on improving his 3 point range as well as his ball handling so that he’s able to get separation from defenders.  He has a few team and individual goals he’d like to accomplish this year.  He would like for the team to win the Western Buckeye League and then make it to state.  Elida is returning 3 starters from last year and 5 of their top 7 players so the possibility of this happening is more than just a dream, it could be a reality in 4 months.

As far as individual goes, Dan would like to eclipse the 1,000 point barrier this year.  He needs to average 14 points to get to 1,000 points by the end of the regular season.  He would also like to win Player of the Year in the conference.  There are only 2 players back from last year’s 1st Team All Conference.  Also, Dan would like to make at least 2nd Team All State this year improving from Honorable Mention last year.

After high school, he’d like to continue playing basketball and has 2 NAIA offers from Concordia and GoshenConerstone in Grand Rapids keeps in contact on a regular basis.  Dan completed a workout for Tiffin and visited Urbana which are division 2 schools showing the most interest.  He would like to major in Business Management and attend a school that is no more than 2 hours away from home.  He also wants to play for a coach that he feels most comfortable with and really wants Dan to be part of their program for the next 4 years.

Just being around Dan for the last 6 years, I know he is going to be the hardest worker on the court and he’s able to play at a high level on both ends of the court.  As a coach, you rarely take a kid like Dan off the court because he’s able to do so much for his team.  Wherever Dan chooses to play, he will be a great addition to their program.