Houston's WNBA star Charli Collier holds free basketball camp

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Houston's WNBA star Charli Collier holds a free basketball camp.

"It's an amazing opportunity for me to come back from Dallas to my hometown and give back," Collier said.

Collier held her inaugural basketball camp for third to twelfth-grade girls in the same gym she learned how to play basketball at Barbers Hill High School in Mont Belvieu.

"I get a chance to learn and be a good basketball player," said 8-year old Bailee Dowdye.

While other athletes up-charge $250 for their camp, Collier's camp was free.

"I just remembered growing up; camps used to be super expensive. So now, I'm in the position I'm in and want to give back to my community. I want them to come here and play basketball and have fun," Collier said.

Collier has come a long way since we first met in 2015. She worked hard to become the number one player in the nation for high school basketball.

She starred at the University of Texas before being the first overall pick in the WNBA draft to the Dallas Wings in 2021.

"I've come really far. It's just been a blessing for my growth to see me now," Collier said.

Honors and accolades are great, but her approach to basketball and life is the same as in high school. Having fun and growth at her core while doing it with a big smile.

"It's a wonderful feeling to see Charli is coming back to our hometown, not only here in Mont Belvieu, but our Crosby family is here and the surrounding towns. To have Charli give them time to spend just this day for this area means the world to me. It kind of makes me feel she's humble like we raised her to be. This is all coming full circle, so I'll try to keep back the tears, but it's a fun day, an exciting day. We've met so many good campers they're all excited." said the WNBA star's mom, Ponda Collier.

"We've learned how to do layups, dribbling, and switching up," said 11-year old Teagan Godfrey.

"it's actually very fun because I met a WNBA player," said 9-year old Jayden.

"It's more than the game of basketball. Coming back, giving back to your community builds a foundation and relations for generations to come," Collier said.
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