Brentwood’s Jordan Houegban is a smooth-shooting junior guard

Jordan Houegban is a 16-year-old LA kid of African descent raised by a single mother. He fell in love with basketball from day one when, as a 5-year-old, he showed up at the Palisades Recreation Center at the request of his mother.

“When I was little, I always told my mother that I wanted to play basketball,” said Houegban, whose mother was born in Sierra Leone and his father in Benin. “She finally listened. I signed up for a team and it was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had and made me love basketball.”

Watching Houegban shoot a three-point try for the Brentwood School is like watching an eagle in full flight. His high arc shot is beautiful and when it falls through the net perfectly you’ll want to repeat it because it looks so smooth and masterful in flight.

It has been perfected through hours of practice in gyms morning and night.

“I think Jordan is going to be great,” said Brentwood coach Ryan Bailey. “Even after a good night of shooting, he’s back in the gym by 7 the next morning.”

Thing is, Houegban looks like he’s in the middle of another growth spurt. He’s 6ft 1 but walks the court with feet that expand, which explains his size 13 shoes and occasional awkwardness.

“I’m definitely going through a growth spurt,” he said.

Bailey added, “When you shake his hand, it’s like a glove around you.”

Houegban’s mother, Maya, came from Sierra Leone when she was 5 and lived in New York. His father is 6-5. She is 5-4, and when Jordan passed her and his older sister in height, the family dynamic changed.

“That’s why I knew I had to get him under control before he got bigger than me,” his mother said. “Now he towers over me. I can’t look down on him and tell him anything.”

Jordan always listens to his mother.

“We believe in education,” she said. “Have made it a daily thing, not Monday through Friday, but every day.”

His sister is visiting Pennsylvania. Maya has been the mom in charge for years and has relied on a number of coaches to help Jordan develop his skills. His willingness and enthusiasm to embrace those who will help him on his basketball journey has set him on the path to success.

Bailey just hopes he doesn’t miss the growth spurt while Houegban is at Brentwood. A lot of things will change if he finishes 6-4. Bailey has worked with Houegban since he was in sixth grade. He averaged 16 points this season for 18-3 Brentwood and made six threes in a loss to Windward on Tuesday.

“You knew he was going to be good because he had the desire,” Bailey said. “Some kids speak it. He’s fine.”

Said Houegban: “I can ask him anything and he will give me advice.”

And he never forgets who’s boss at home, even when he’s the biggest.

“At the end of the day, I’m a fiery little person,” his mother said. “I grew up in New York. You will listen. I’ll be the boss until he graduates.”

https://www.latimes.com/sports/highschool/story/2023-01-18/brentwood-school-jordan-houegban-rising-junior-guard Brentwood’s Jordan Houegban is a smooth-shooting junior guard

Emma Bowman

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