The student news site of George Rogers Clark High School

Smoke Signals Student Media

The student news site of George Rogers Clark High School

Smoke Signals Student Media

The student news site of George Rogers Clark High School

Smoke Signals Student Media

Coach Robbie Graham crafts a dynasty with GRC Hoops

Photo by Smoke Signals
Coach Robbie Graham has built a legacy of Hoops excellence at GRC.

When you think of the greatest coaches to ever be involved with a program at GRC, Coach Robbie Graham is one of the first names that comes to mind. 

Graham has been the head coach of the GRC Hoops program for 13 years. In that short time he has brought a tremendous amount of success to GRC. 

291 wins, 103 losses, 11 straight District championships, eight 10th Region championships, six Sweet Sixteen appearances, six Elite Eight appearances, three Final Four appearances. An impressive laundry list of accolades. And the list is still growing.

The Cardinals finished the year at 30-4, another in a string of very strong seasons.

“It’s more than basketball to him. The team is his family,” says senior Makili Tabor. “What makes him so great is his love for the game and his love for the team.”

Coach Graham’s tenure obviously has resulted in a legacy.

“From day one we were building a winning culture, a culture of success,” Graham says. “We want to constantly be playing, practicing, and living like one of the best programs in Kentucky.”

Coach Graham is well loved by his players, current and former.

Every year Coach preaches hard work, believing it is a large part of why his teams are successful. “It goes without saying, you either work hard or you won’t play,” says Graham.

Tabor adds, “Coach Graham helps us through tough games by staying calm and knowing how to help us improve.” 

Coach Graham puts a roster of hard workers together every year. Former player Sydney Anderson says, “No matter what is going on in life you were always expected to show up and work hard, and Coach Graham made sure we did every day.”

Graham not only coaches success on the court, but he prepares his players for life off the court as well. 

Coach Graham has seen 16 of his players go to college on a basketball scholarship, with many not only playing basketball, but also beginning their careers with an education. “I’ll never ask for anything in return, but when the time comes to graduate I want the invite,” Graham says.

Coach Graham teaches these young women to reach their full potential. “The most valuable takeaway from playing and coaching for Coach G is that he coaches you in more than just basketball; he coaches you to be the best version of yourself,” says former player and coach Paige Taylor. “He is a mentor in all aspects of life and someone you can always depend on.”

Furthermore, Coach Graham creates the mindset needed for all of his players to have very successful lives. One shining example is his daughter.

“It was very simple growing up,” said Lexxus Graham-Blincoe, Bowling Green State assistant coach. “I was taught that if you are a Graham you automatically have toughness; mentally, physically, emotionally. He taught me to grind for everything. Without carrying that with me every single day I would not be where I’m at now. From a Kentucky gal coaching high school, to a Division I assistant coach.”

Former GRC Principal and Athletic director Jamie Keene worked closely alongside Coach Graham for years.

“Coach Graham is just an amazing leader, not only as basketball coach, but a leader in our building, and an advocate for our students,” Keene says. “The extent of Coach Graham’s influence goes far beyond the court.”

As he just completed yet another successful season and state tournament appearance, Coach Graham would like to give a special thank you to his family:

“Some of my proudest moments coaching have been being blessed with the opportunity to coach my two daughters (Lexxus and Aaliyah), and winning my first regional championship with Lexxus. Also watching Lexxus and my son, Jordan, reach their dreams and goals of playing college basketball on full scholarship,” says Graham. “And a big THANK YOU  to my amazing wife, Deena, for holding it down and allowing me to do what I do.  She has been a true coach’s wife and the foundation of our family. I also want to give a shout out to all our former and current GRC Hoops players, coaches and support staff that have made coaching such an enjoyable experience.”

Coach Robbie Graham is one of the most successful and influential coaches that GRC has ever had the blessing of having, and the Cardinals look forward to the success that he is sure to bring in the future. 

Everyone knows Coach Graham is a tough coach, but he does it out of love,” says Anderson. “The reason that so many of his players continue with basketball at the next level and have successful pursuits in medicine, law, etc. is exactly because of that toughness. Knowing that someone sees the greatness inside of you and is simply motivating you to pull it out really makes you respect all that they do for you. Coach is a great leader and mentor and I know so many girls have been molded into the people they are today because of him.

Coach Graham never fails to acknowledge the great support he receives from his family at every game. (Photo by Smoke Signals)
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Liam Parido
Liam Parido, Managing Editor
My name is Liam Parido and I am THE BETTER Smoke Signals Managing Editor. My absolute favorite thing to do is run. I am team captain of the boys cross country team and the distance track team. My hobbies include whatever I’m doing that week (my hobbies frequently change). I listen to music 24/7 and I love listening to all sorts of genres. I am also a Get Rowdy Crew Student Section leader -- GO CARDS! If you need something done I probably know how to do it... maybe. Peace, love, Smoke Signals. Shoutout to Joby. #ALLIN

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    Eric SmithMay 8, 2024 at 10:07 pm

    Well written article. With being one that has been blessed to work with and along side the GRC Hoops Team I have always felt the main reason that I like and appreciate the program is the love that Coach Graham has for the players on the court but even more the love that he has for the them off the court. It is something you don’t find all the time with coaches and with some you don’t find that at all. Because of this love comes much admiration and respect!!