Midtown Raleigh News

New basketball team promises fun and second chances – Wiggins

Tullettia Taylor and Chaun Ferguson know college sports rule in the Triangle.

But they hope to expand the excitement through the Vulcans, a new basketball team that promises family-friendly, affordable fun.

“Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill are untapped areas for professional sports, with lots of potential,” said Taylor, who co-owns the team with Ferguson. “We are looking forward to bringing our concept and our team into a community rich with athletic ability and fans eager to enjoy the movement.”

The Vulcans are the 100th team to join the American Basketball Association for the 2016-17 season. A second tryout for athletes ages 18 to 35 is set for 4 to 6 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 13, at The Dream Center on Fox Road in Raleigh.

For players, coaches and personnel, the team zeroes in on health promotion, fitness, sports education and personal development, including career development and community involvement.

For us – the fans – Taylor and Ferguson promise a game-day experience with tip-off events, themed tailgating and more – all punctuated by the team’s mascot, Vulcatron.

A percentage of proceeds from games and events are earmarked to create and sustain local and national charitable initiatives and partnerships. The team’s “Each One Reach One” youth program offers mentoring and student internships in the sports industry. Local youth will be invited guests at home games and special events.

The American Basketball Association formed in 1967 and merged with the NBA a decade later. It returned in 1999 and now has 70 teams competing in 10 divisions.

Taylor, who works as a physics teacher at Enloe High School in Raleigh, said the Vulcans are the first ABA team in the Triangle.

They’re not the first lesser-known professional or semi-pro sports team, though.

Carolina Phoenix, a women’s full-contact tackle football team founded in 2000, played its way to the 2013 championship at the Durham County Stadium.

Raleigh Revolt is a partnership with the Premiere Basketball League and Tobacco Road Basketball League. The team competes against the Bull City Legacy of Durham and the Cary Invasion.

The Raleigh Flyers are a professional ultimate Frisbee team.

There are others. And there’s been a string of failed attempts by semi-pro and professional teams to set root here.

“We’re serious about this,” said Ferguson, a former athlete from Little League to college. “We’ve got an open market for these athletes.”

That’s the biggest draw for athletes like James Cox, 35, who is trying to land a spot on the Vulcans’ roster. He wants a chance to keep playing his sport.

“It’s a great opportunity,” said Cox, who played point guard at Louisburg College. “There are a lot of people who want to play who never had a chance to play overseas or pro ball, and this program is giving us a chance.”

ldrwigg@gmail.com

Find out more

For more about the Vulcans, go to www.rdcvulcans.com.

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