Jewish Link – Valley Torah High School hosts Tamir Goodman on their Simi Valley Shabbaton
A rare combination of basketball and inspiration sums up the action-packed weekend at last week’s Valley Torah High School Shabbaton. Tamir Goodman, dubbed “The Jewish Jordan” by the media, captivated rebbeim and students alike with his intriguing combination of devout faith and basketball prowess on the court.
Tamir was a top-ranked high school recruit from Baltimore who went on to make history as the first Jewish basketball player to play Division I college and professional basketball while faithfully wearing a yarmulke on the court and without playing on Shabbos.
The Shabbaton began on Friday with a full day of activities including archery and a high ropes course and a series of basketball clinics with Tamir. The program culminated with an exclusive clinic for the VTHS varsity team. The energy from the court carried right into Shabbos, with tremendous ruach, dancing, singing and inspiring Divrei Torah.
Tamir addressed all of the high school boys multiple times and hosted a seniors-only session as well. He led the students through his fascinating journey, highlighting many of the opportunities he had for Kiddush Hashem and his growth in his Torah observance, while pursuing his basketball dream. The intense struggles Tamir shared as an observant Jew in a very harsh environment brought a new perspective of emunah to our students. Throughout Shabbos, Tamir was surrounded by many students clamoring to hear more firsthand inspiring insights.
Since retiring from playing in 2009, Tamir has established his reputation as a sought-after motivational speaker, coach, and educator. He is also the founder and director of the non-profit Coolanu Israel, creator and CEO of Sport Strings Tzitzit, partner in the Omri Casspi Basketball Camps, author of The Jewish Jordan’s Triple Threat, and the inventor of Zone190. Tamir is a former soldier in the Israeli Defense Forces, holds a B.A. in communications, and is the father of four kids.
Valley Torah is grateful to Scott and Tova Loffman and Brian and Tabitha Dror for coordinating and sponsoring Tamir’s visit.
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