IRVINE — When UC Irvine supporters approached Scott Brooks about lending his name to a golf tournament to raise money for the school's athletic department, it likely had more to do with the cachet the Oklahoma City Thunder coach who starred for UCI in the mid 1980s could add to the event.
As it turns out, there is, perhaps, no former student-athlete who can better appreciate the power and possibility of a single scholarship than Brooks.
Though he led the West Coast in scoring at 23.8 points per game as a UCI senior and went on to play 11 seasons for six teams in the NBA, Brooks' basketball road might have ended in 1985 as a sophomore point guard at San Joaquin Delta Community College.
Brooks, who played as a freshman at Texas Christian University, but transferred to the Stockton-based JC program because he was homesick and missed California, helped lead Delta to the No. 1 seed in the 16-team state tournament held at Selland Arena in Fresno.