Thomas Kelso

Profile Updated: July 20, 2018
Residing In: Alta Loma, CA USA
Children: Kelly
Comments:

Played college football in Utah and in 1971 was a member of the first ever USA Division One College team to play football games in Japan. The Silk Bowl was played in Tokyo's Yoyogi National Stadium the site of the 1964 Olympic Games, a week later, December 26th, played a final game, in Osaka's Kansai Koshein Ball Park.

In the 90's I started Professional Sports Management team that signed four NBA draft picks in three years.
Trained, coached and mentored Venus and Serena Williams' older half brother Charles Williams who basketball coach Jerry Tarkanian once told me was the greatest athlete he'd ever seen. Charles later became the starting point guard for Sports Illustrated Magazine's number one rated Univ of Cincinatti basketball team that was later mired in controvesy and suspension, Rob "Sic Wit It" Kennedy who is credited arguably with making the greatest trick shot ever in a nationally televised and internationally viewed basketball game and Venice Beach legend Reggie "Slam" Cotton, the Mike Jordan of Wayside and the only man I've ever seen complete a 360 slam dunk off a lob. Both after turning down multiple offers including the Harlem Globetrotters became star members for a few years on the popular nationally televised ESPN series "Street Ball" "The Original And One Team" sponsored by Mountain Dew. To name a few.
Sitting in the old UNLV basketball gym in the mid 90's with our Danny Orr watching my guy Atlanta Ga's finest "Give em Goose Bumps And Make Em Say Whoa" Jerran Cobb put up 48 in the D 2 College Vegas Tourney basketball finals. To name a few.

School Story:

How did this ever happen...
Hank, Fie, Pat, Mike, Bain, Liz and Joe. I know you are all gone, but I know what, you already know that again one day we will play sports and dance all night. together ...see you's.
WHS 1964-68. I was lost in darkness, and was touched by the light, young, anxious and always "fat" in a hurry untogether we brought virgin summers, winters, spring and fall.
Shooting pool with Chandler at the Buehlers'. "God" why isn't he here to tell the stories..
"Hearing whisphers" all mine and asking??? How dare they take my Pride and Joy, asking for her heart... and playing with mine.
My favorite teachers were Jerry Doggett and Chick Hearn. Vin Scully still is.
Yes! It's Halloween.
A funny memory. My El Rancho football buddies , Joey Cabrera, David Cervantes and Bill Kleine. Their senior year at the Ranch they did not have a first period and they would show up in the mornings before school at WHS. Some may remember them, they wore their lettermen jackets, and when school started they would hide in the library. The librarian never said a word, Kleine looked like Paul Newman, dark, silent, chiseled with windex blue eyes, Dave like Ray Danton, Joey, with that sense of humor and rare if ever seen before or since animal magnetism, I remember missing Joey, trying to tackle him a couple of times, we had been football rivals since 1961, Joe played for the Montebello Indians, I the Whittier Valiants, in our 1967 game our senior year, and not feeling to good about it. I had him dead to rights and he got away...Years later I would recover that 1967 game film, and relive missing him, again, and again and then getting him, again and again, and again. Watching the 1967 El Rancho vs Compton Centennial CIF first round playoff game film that I recovered along with ours, helped me. Centennial going into that game was ranked number one in the U S of A our senior year and after watching it I no longer felt so bad. Centenial's All American middle linebacker had a worse time with spinning Joe then I, he never got Joe...Once. Joe won that Friday night light game in Cerritos Colleges' Falcon Stadium, Joe scored both TD's on runs of 37 and 14 yards. The Ranch won 13-7... a huge upset...it wasn't to me or any of us that ever played the Ranch or knew Joe.
Back to the WHS library, Agahst? You know what? They made that librarians day, night and weekend...If she is still alive she still smiles when she recalls it. If you want to smile and ever run into Jerry Renfro, Greg Haserot, Brent Tucker, Pete Meiras, Guy Rebentisch, Guys dad Reb, my mom Kathleen, Fred Padilla, Chris Sherman, Chris McCluer, Ernie Santa Cruz or I, ask us about Joey. Joey can't speak for himself, Joey is the epitome of the adage "Only the good die young."

Our heart wrenching last seconds five point loss to Arcadia in the final game our Junior year. That loss cost us any chance of going to CIF as it was understood that if you win you're in and if you lose your out. In the last seconds of the game, Arcadia's final offensive possesion Lopez for defensive purposes put Bob Chandler at Safety a position Bob had not played all season. In desperation Arcadia threw a hail mary pass that really was a wounded duck, an easy play for Bob, so easy he was licking his chops. Some may remember that Bob was a trememdous leaper which proved his and our undoing, he misjudged the ball and jumped so high that he jumped over it, and helplessly watch the ball fall into the recievers hands and the guy run into the end zone. That was one dead silent bus ride back to school. In the locker room, long after everyone else had left, I stayed there with Bob trying with all my heart and soul to console him, he was distraught and over come with shame, he couldn't lift his head, and over, and over again he verbally blamed himself. I told him, over and over "Bob if not for you, we would not have won the games we did." After a long while he lifted his head and with a stealy glint in his eyes looked me dead in my eye's, then got up and left without saying a word. In those day's boys weren't supposed to cry... he didn't.
Robbie L how weird is this... the guy that you woke up out of his body and made in a most unorthodox way graduate high school, is alergic to plastic.
Thank you Dr Blanchard.

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I noticed Gil Albitre has joined this site so recently I reached out to him by private message asking if he was planning on attending the 50th? and have not received a response.
A little Gil Albitre trivia: Gil and a son are the only father and son duo to average 30 or more points per game for an entire CIF SS high school Basketball season.

In 1968 Gil was one of 4 others in CIF SS Basketball history to average 30 or more points per 32 minute game, the first being the All Time great Billy Kilmer Citrus HS, UCLA All American in football, Heisman Trophy runner up and NFL super star quarterback with the Saints, Redskins and others, Fred Goss Compton HS, UCLA where in 1964 Fred was a member of John Wooden's first Bruin National Championship team. Steve Patterson Santa Clara HS, UCLA All American, National Champion and successful NBA career and Paul Westphal USC All American, NBA All Star and NBA Coach, who in 1968 with Gil became the 4th and 5th to achieve the mark, All but Gill were CIF players of the Year. The one word that may have best described Gil in 1968 is "Amazing". Now 50 years later there have only been a handful, if that many hoopsters to average 30 per contest and consider Gill who was an unbelievable outside shooter played before the 3 pointer.

Backing up a few years, to I'm not sure but it was either 5th or 6th grade at Benjamin Franklin Elem when several days after the start of the school year both Gil and younger brother, by a year Tony show up on campus. Seeing them was a huge thrill and quite a surprise for me and I'm sure Guy Rebentisch, Greg Haserot, Freddie Padilla, Jay Gatfield and other Franklin classmates felt the same way. As a group we had known each other from Elementary school athletic competitions where elementary school's would compete against each other. The games were played on Saturdays with a home and away schedule and we also got to know each other from The Friends Park Summer Baseball League program for kids 11-13 So seeing Gil my first thought was how cool that he's joined us and how much fun it would be having him to play with and against at recess, lunch and hopefully after school. Gil and Tony lived on the complete opposite end of the school district from Franklin in the JG Whittier ,Lydia Jackson Elem's district and so I never got the details on how they ended up at Franklin, the one elementary that was farthest away from their family home but it didn't last long, shortly after arriving on campus they were gone the same way they arrived a complete surprise, without notice or warning

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Recently I discovered several original LA Times newspapers dated 11-23-11-28 1963, it was the day and week following JFK's assassination in Dallas. I was then at Dexter Jr Hi in 8th grade Art class when to the classes surprise a voice came over the intercom, it was the only time in my two years there that I remember the intercom being used. The first announcement was that JFK had been shot and shortly after the voice came on again announcing his death. After class the usual noise of voices of students moving through the hallways to their next class was now one of stunned silence, you could hear a pin drop.
The LA Times 11-24-1963 Sunday sports edition featured Jim Murray's column NO TIME FOR FUN. in reference to the assassination and the 11-28-63 Sport page is of some personal interest, it shows a captioned action photo of Whittier College running back Ron Hales. Ron is a WHS alum and former WHS coach and teacher. The Thanksgiving Day game was televised on KCOP channel 13 and the game determined the Conference champion. Ron had a big day rushing for 122 yards and a TD and the Poets won 17-6.
I think it's safe to say an LA Times front Sport page feature photo of a Whittier College football game, locally televised on KCOP channel 13 or on any channel may never happen again. The edition also includes Jim Murray's article writing of the heart break and stab in the nations back caused by JFK's death and the fact that it was on the same front page with a photo of former WHS and Whittier College football player and alum, the same schools that JFK's 1960 Presidential opponent Richard M Nixon attended and played football seems a bit surreal.
I have listed several photos of the LA Times from 11-23 and 11-28-1963 and a 1967 WHS Yearbook photo of coach Ron Hales.

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