By: Dylan Tehada
Developments in technology are becoming more important to the game of basketball than ever before. Perhaps the biggest implication new tech has had on the sport is how accessible knowledge about the game is. VReps, a revolutionary basketball IQ trainer, is one of these new pieces of tech that strives to help basketball players by training the mind and providing resources that effectively communicate on court knowledge. We are excited to announce our partnership with VReps as we too understand the importance of the mental side of the game and seek to implement new and innovative ways to help the UPB community realize their unlimited potential.
VReps was founded in 2015 by Shawn Cooper during his time as a scout player for the women’s basketball team at the University of Michigan. The difficulty to digest scouting reports for other teams sparked Cooper’s idea to provide an online platform that teaches the mental side of the game in a fun and easy way. As time has passed, VReps has grown and more minds have contributed to the knowledge taught on the app. With this partnership, VReps seeks to make the knowledge taught by UPB player development coaches more accessible when athletes are not in the facility through their AI platforms and immersive technology.
“With this partnership with UPB, we're providing [Coach] Packie and the whole team with a platform to reach as many people as possible and have the ability to spread that globally,” said member of Vreps’ partnership team, Dan Aronowitz.
While the platform’s main purpose is to inform and educate athletes, it seeks to do so in a fun and “gamified” way to incentivize players to continue getting mental repetitions. Through immersive AI technology, VReps is able to simulate in-game scenarios virtually, test its users retention of the material through quizzes, and provides access to a large database of advice and instruction from a plethora of basketball minds who seek to spread their knowledge.
One of the biggest misconceptions in player development is that focusing solely on one’s physical skill set yields success. What players often disregard is how honing mental skills such as making defensive reads or knowing what situation to shoot a certain shot can elevate one’s to new heights. The mental side of the game is the mutual trait that both VReps and UPB seek to help athletes develop and offer more access to overall.
“I think [VReps] and UPB are aligned that the mental side is something that's often overlooked in sort of today's basketball and that's something that I know Packie incorporates into his training at all levels from the NBA down to down to the youth level, and really is something that our platform can help kind of boost,” Aronowitz said.
The game changes and evolves immensely at different levels from the middle school AAU level all the way to the professional NBA level. The game becomes more complex and understanding of the little nuances that yield success becomes even more paramount as the competition increases. Due to its large database of knowledge and tools, Vreps allows athletes of all skill levels playing at any competitive level to learn about the game. Whether it be fundamental basketball IQ or complex offensive reads, VReps provides their users the resources necessary to train the mind and improve their game.
“I think a tool like VReps gives players the opportunity to really learn the game at various levels and how the spacing is different, how the speed is different, what NBA players are running, different actions at the college level and at the high school level,” Aronowitz said.
We are excited to see what the future of this partnership has in store for both UPB and VReps. High tech platforms such as VReps will play an integral role in how we train our athletes as we continue to strive towards helping the UPB community realize their unlimited potential.
Julius Randle has been the epitome of constant growth and improvement season after season since his debut in 2014. After an impressive 2022-2023 season with the Knicks averaging 25.1 points per game on 46% shooting, Randle seeks to continue building on last season’s success and contributing to a winning franchise. Although the start of the Knicks’ season has not gone exactly to plan, Randle has showcased his veteran poise and innate ability to continue elevating his game as the long NBA season treads on.