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Boys & Girls Youth Basketball

About the West Bearden Basketball League (WBBL)

West Bearden Basketball League



The West Bearden Basketball League (WBBL) was originally called West Central Basketball. Under commissioner Steve Watson it became the West Bearden Basketball League. In 1993 Robert Hewgley became the commissioner and began to use the acronym WBBL.

In 2000, Robert began giving preseason instructional clinics to players in the fall to prepare their skills for the regular season.  From 2005-2010 Robert did a deep and wide research project on how best to teach the modern basketball fundamentals.  As a result in 2010 the WBBL's Offseason Development program began.

Offseason Development is a March-August program which develops basketball skills for boys and girls ages 5-18. It is extremely flexible on when players can attend which allows players to be involved in other sports while also allowing them to continually increase their basketball skills.

In 2012 Saturday Offseason Games were added, also with great flexibility for families. However, in 2019 WBBL revamped the Game schedule and we now offer Spring, Summer and Fall games nights twice a week March - September. 


The WBBL believes that youth sports should be fun.  

The WBBL believes that incremental learning is the secret to success in life and on the court.  

The WBBL believes that youth can take the passion they have for something (basketball) and combine it with a positive attitude to get a little bit better. Everyday the are in the gym with WBBL, the staff is focused on helping players develop confidence that leads to success.  

The WBBL believes proper effort put into basketball can help teach productive life skills.

The WBBL believes that most competitive games end with a winner and a loser and the result should not have a high value judgement related to it.  

The WBBL believes it is the process not the result that improves us.

The WBBL believes that good sportsmanship is key in youth sports.


Year- round Basketball

Pre-season skills sessions runs the month of September. This is a proven program that will help any player get ready for his or her season.

September (Fall) Game Nights run the month of September on Monday and Wednesday Nights. Teams are put together at the beginning of the month and play together all month long. No practices. These are fun and competitive games.

October is the month we do registration/evaluations  for the WBBL Regular Rec League Season and form teams (everyone makes a team).

WBBL Regular Rec League Season starts Nov 1 and runs into early February.  City of Knoxville tournament runs the last half of February.

Offseason Development  runs March - August. Classes are held 2 nights a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  Each night has 2 separate classes, each an hour long.  In these classes every athlete is almost continuously doing a drill repetition: there is rarely time when they are standing unless listening to an instructor talk.

Most classes have a staff of 7: A lead instructor, 5 basket coaches, and an admin person.  The instructors are excellent and highly trained as instructors (some are former WBBL players now playing college ball). The promise that we make is at the end of every class: every player has improved their skills a little, is smiling and sweaty, and has had the opportunity to make new friends.

Spring Game Nights run March - May on Monday and Friday nights. Teams are put together at the beginning of the month and play together all month long. No practices. Teammate requests honored. These are fun and competitive games.

Summer Game Nights run June - August on Monday and Wednesday nights. Teams are put together at the beginning of the month and play together all month long. No practices. Teammate requests honored. These are fun and competitive games.


The WBBL is highly interested in developing not only lifetime basketball enjoyment and quality high school players, but also coaches and referees.
There is a pathway at the WBBL to becoming a youth coach or referee.  The WBBL is always looking for the next leaders of Knoxville's basketball community. 

Many young people have found that the lessons they learned teaching younger children and the credibility that the experience added to their resume has helped them get into college programs.  Many college grad students have found that interning with us has been a good fit them.

Being mentored as a referee can lead to a good part-time income regardless of where one lives or what time of the year it is. Good basketball referees are always in demand and the WBBL has a respected referee training program.  

Whole Teams

The WBBL has always encouraged excellence. When a coach, after years of nurturing and teaching his players, finally has an excellent team the WBBL does not believe in making them break up their team because they are "too good".  Long ago the WBBL figured out that if everybody has good sportsmanship that one "tough" team in a league is not a problem as long as you don't have to play them every week.  

By having some brave coaches and players in the past the WBBL now has many excellent teams in every age group. The WBBL honors all parents request.  We have enough teams that whole teams can come play with us and whether they are above average, average or below average, we have plenty of teams that they will match up well against.  Just because a coach brings a full team to a WBBL season does not mean that we necessary expect it to be a great team.  Many parents have a group of kids that like to do things together.  If you have a group of players that want to stay with each other in the WBBL we are happy to accommodate that.  

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