75-year-old Bob Emery rekindles love for basketball

Bob Emery
Bob Emery(WVIR)
Published: Sep. 6, 2023 at 2:39 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - A 75-year-old Charlottesville man is back on the hardwood, rekindling his love for basketball.

Bob Emery can typically be found playing pickup basketball with the guys at the Harvest Church gym, but only if you get up early enough.

“We get up a quarter to five and get down here,” Bob said.

Bob is holding his own against the younger players, showing off a sweet mid-range jumper.

“A couple weeks ago I played against a kid that was 16 years old. He was a good player, but I’m 60 years older than this kid,” Bob said. “I enjoy being the old guy.”

Bob played college ball at UC Santa Barbara back in the 1960s. The 6′3″ shooting guard has memories of playing against Lew Alcindor at Powerful UCLA in Pauley Pavilion.

“Those games just rocked with music and excitement and energy. We got creamed every year, we were their punching bag to warm up the season,” Bob said.

He and his wife moved from California to Charlottesville about 30 years ago. He got a group together to play pickup ball after not playing for decades.

“I have my moments when some of my talent from former years comes back, but it’s not that often. I enjoy supporting the other guys,” Bob said.

“His bank shot is no joke,” Nick Hahn said. “Sometimes when he’s playing against guys that are a third his age... We appreciate the way he plays. He’s sound with his basketball skills.”

Bob also runs Global Opportunities for Christ, a nonprofit organization. However, before work, twice a week, it’s basketball.

“It’s a fun game. The more you stick with it, the healthier and better outlook you’ll have on life,” Bob said. “This is my plate of exercise every week. I look forward to taking advantage of it every week.”

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