Plans unveiled for Romeo Langford basketball court in New Albany

  • 05/11/2018 8:00 pm in

NEW ALBANY, Ind. – Plans were unveiled on Friday evening for an outdoor basketball court in Floyd County that will be named in honor of incoming IU freshman and Mr. Basketball Romeo Langford.

The court, which will be a part of the new Kevin Hammersmith Memorial Park, is expected to open on July 14.

The Floyd County Parks and Recreation department held a ceremony on Friday night featuring Langford, his father Tim and New Albany coach Jim Shannon.

The court will be blue and red and will feature Langford’s name on the sidelines with his signature on the court. It will have two adjustable goals and will be regulation size.

Langford, who committed to Indiana on April 30 and recently signed his National Letter of Intent with the Hoosiers, is the state’s fourth all-time leading scorer.

He led the Bulldogs to the 2016 Class 4A state championship and was also named a McDonald’s All-American, the Gatorade player of the year in Indiana, a Jordan Brand All-Star and a Naismith All-American.

“So many people in Floyd County have enjoyed watching Romeo play over the past four years, and naming the court in his honor is a way for our community to look back and say ‘thank-you’ to him,” said Steve LaDuke, vice president of the county parks board. “Every kid that steps on any outdoor court should not only try to emulate Romeo’s actions on the court, but also his demeanor and kindness off-the- court.”

In 2019, the Floyd County Parks and Recreation department will also improve and name a court in honor of former IU guard Pat Graham, who played at Floyd Central. That honor will coincide with the 30th anniversary of Graham being named Mr. Basketball.

Both Romeo and Tim Langford spoke on Friday night at shelter area in the park and complete video of their comments can be found below as well as a photo gallery:

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  • PocketHoosier

    Dibs on first game

  • chris

    As a New Albany resident….glad they are tipping the hat to Pat as well!

  • HuntinHoosier86

    Hey Alex, I saw a newspaper article (maybe the Tribune…can’t remember) that said it’s on Charlestown road. I drive that frequently and haven’t seen a sign for the park anywhere. I know they’re doing a lot of work by Northside. Do you know if it’s on that side of the road or over behind the movie theater on the other side? Kinda wanna check it out!

  • inLinE6

    I’m with you, but considering Romeo is 4th on state’s all time scoring list, which doesn’t come by often, and he chose to stay in state for college basketball, and it’s just an outdoor court in a public park, I give it a pass…… But I’d prefer to name after fallen soldiers who not just contribute, but die for others.

  • Arch Puddington

    I almost made a similar point. There are doctors and cops and teachers and scientists and others who make great contributions, but athletes and other famous people generally get things like this. Not Romeo’s fault, though! Just the way the world is.

  • Hoosier Brews62

    It’s on that side of the road where the church is

  • pdhoosier

    This is where Kevin Hammersmith comes into play. The park is in his honor (but the court appropriately gets RL’s distinction). Look him up. Great man and a really good friend of my father’s before he passed unexpectedly. Not just a sports figure…

  • Arch Puddington

    Don’t get me wrong, he’s a great player and by all accounts a good kid, but….

    Monuments to high school kids seem like a lot to me. Too much, frankly. I get it that he has been a good citizen and has made a point of signing autographs and all that, but I think we make too much of our sports heroes in general, and the growing trend of statues and things named after players does not sit well with me. Even when it is someone like Peyton Manning,who did much for indianapolis even beyond the football field, I’m just not into canonizing athletes.

    Just me, though. Clearly others feel different, and clearly there are bigger problems in the world than who a basketball court is named after.

  • HuntinHoosier86

    Cool, thanks! I’ll go check it out sometime.

  • Hoosier Brews62

    Planning on the same. Maybe we can play a game of horse!

  • marcusgresham

    It is the park in behind Northside. They’ve also put the Little League fields out there and they look like nice ones. At one point there was discussion of a nine-hole disc golf course out there too, but there just isn’t room.

  • marcusgresham

    I see your point, but I think it’s more for the city of New Albany to honor someone they’re proud of and to be able to point out to the younger kids that “this is someone for you to emulate.”
    As for the Peyton statue, what other structure would be more fitting outside of the Colts’ stadium than it?

  • marcusgresham

    Which park will that court be in? I know they have some courts at Garry Cavan Park and I think there are some at Greenville Park, too. Those are more in the Floyd Central section of the district.

  • coachv

    would the court be named for him if he chose to attend kansas?

  • Mark Bando

    Hey Romeo. You look great in that shirt.

  • Outoftheloop

    I will leave it to the community where Romeo lives and plays to determine what is warranted as an honor for a HS grad! What a great honor!

  • Arch Puddington

    Like I said, I’m not a fan of statues for athletes at all. I’m just not into that kind of reverence or glorification, and if I was, it would be for someone who does something other than score baskets or throw touchdowns. That’s not a knock on Peyton, Romeo, or any other athlete with a public shrine. You know I love sports by virtue of my posts here, and appreciate that some athletes use their prominence to do good in the the world. But as a society we are much too devoted to the cult of celebrity for my tastes.

  • BannersOnTheWall

    The court design looks really good. Romeo wearing an IU shirt looks even better!

  • hardly

    If my hometown had a Mr. BB, it would be exactly this type of celebration. That’s what makes Indiana so special IMO. He could have left and gone to prep school – he didn’t. He could have been a selfish 18 yr old kid who only cared about himself – he wasn’t. He essentially gave a community, who appreciates hard work and perseverance – especially when applied to basketball – the gift of watching him play over the last four years. They, in turn, show their appreciation by naming a public court after him. Heck, if my hometown had a Mr. BB, they would prob rename the town after him.

  • marcusgresham

    Peyton did build a children’s hospital though, so that’s going above and beyond throwing touchdowns.

  • curtis south

    Great honor for Romeo. But if its up to Newalbany to keep it up it wont be nice for long

  • Outoftheloop

    A very nice, and early honor, for a truly great person! Go Romeo! Go IU! Beat KY!

  • Arch Puddington

    You will note with your keen reading skills that I did not challenge their right to honor Romeo, or call for it to be taken down, or anything else of the sort. I just expressed an opinion about it, something that happens on ITH from time to time.

  • pcantidote

    What is this? A basketball court for ants? How can we expect people to play basketball here if they can’t even fit on the court?

  • for whom the balls roll

    I remember how I idolized the soccer great Pelé when I was a kid. I went to watch him when he visited my country and played with my national team in an exhibit game right before the outbreak of civil war (one of my last enduring images of normalcy that I associate with my homeland), and he signed his name on a piece of currency for me, and which I have since (tragically) lost. I even worshiped him in his Pepsi commercial, LOL. I mean, think about it, Pepsi is just sugar water with artificial coloring, but that classic bottle is legendary in my nostalgic memory scape. What does that say about us? Maybe that ritual is part of who we are, and not everything has to possess rational or “scientific” value.

  • Jordan Frey

    HILARIOUS!!!

  • Tommy Morrsion

    *slow clap