Shaquille O'Neal, who gave San Antonio Spurs fans fits during his championship years with the Los Angeles Lakers, will return to the Alamo City today for a ceremony retiring his Cole High School jersey, 1200 WOAI's Michael Board reports.
Shaq's dad was a career solider, and he played two years at the high school in the Fort Sam Houston ISD.
Retired Cole basketball coach Dave Madura recalls Shaq as a 15 year old. He says when the young Shaquille first arrived, he wasn't impressed.
"I think I put him at the third level," he recalled. "I found out real quick that I had misplaced him. He was an All Star."
Madura says Shaq became the player he was known as at LSU and later in the NBA during his later years at Cole.
"By the time he got out of high school he could handle the ball well, he could shoot pretty well outside, and of course his size inside made him impossible to defend."
Coach Madura says Shaq's 791 in one season remains a state record to this day.
"The only people who didn't recognize what kind of player he was was the media in Texas," he said. "There wasn't a college coach in the U.S. who didn't contact me about him."