Mott’s back-to-back national championship teams from 2007 and 2008 are the subject of a recent feature in the Flint Journal.
The teams are being inducted in the Greater Flint Sports Hall of Fame. The teams’ coach, Steve Schmidt, is already a member of the hall.
With a roster flooded with elite talent, the Bears captured back-to-back national championships in 2007 and 2008 with a combined record of 70-5 overall. Nine players signed NCAA Division I basketball scholarships after their sophomore campaign while six went on to play at the Division II level after leaving Flint from those teams.
Longtime Bears sideline leader Steve Schmidt called the 2007 unit “the best team I’ve ever coached” and often reflects on what may have happened if he was given more time to work with the squad.
“If I could’ve had that group together as a coach for 3-4 years, there’s no doubt in my mind that we could’ve competed for championships in Division I conferences,” Schmidt said. “I think those guys would’ve loved to continue to be able to play together.”
To say that those two squads were loaded is an understatement the size of Schmidt’s trophy case. Kevin Tiggs and Jeremie Simmons had talent to spare with more desire to win than any two players I’ve ever been around.
In the 2007 national tournament run, Schmidt put an all division one starting five on the floor. One of those starters (Tiggs) was the national player of the year; another (Simmons) would win it the following year.
The 2007 championship team is the best in Mott’s history, and I don’t think that’s going to change anytime soon. I hope it does, though.