Sports
Bill Hurley, the new heart and soul of the Dinos, lays down some serious funk during halftime.
Gary Milner/the Gauntlet

Hats off to Bill

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Bill Hurley is a key member of the Dinos men's basketball team. He has never scored a single point because he has never played a single minute in a game. Bill is the team water boy, but don't let his humble title fool you.

Bill's most important job on the team is boosting morale and helping the players keep things in perspective. During a hard practice or after a discouraging loss, players appreciate his ever-present smile and the jokes he tells to lighten heavy hearts. Although Bill is busy, taking three courses and attending Special Olympics basketball practices of his own, he always makes time to attend Dinos practices and all home games.

"It's not hard," he said of keeping such demanding schedule. "I love it. I love people."

When asked if there was anything about his job he disliked, Bill said no.

"It's my life," he explained. "I love basketball."

At home games, not only the team but fans from Calgary and opposing schools alike can see the difference he makes on the court. Regular audience members have all witnessed Bill's halftime cheerleading, running to centre court and leading the crowd in a rendition of the Village People's hit "YMCA."

He is often the subject of photographs snapped at games, sometimes even posing with fans of visiting teams. Everyone who sees him dance understands how important he is to the game.

Bill says he learned the YMCA cheer "from Wayne's World 2, and from CDs at home."

The Calgary native is a 1999 William Aberhart High School graduate. In his spare time, Bill says he likes to "hang with the guys [on the team]."

Team members have shown their appreciation to Bill by taking him out for lunch and spending time with him, because his dedication and optimism are so encouraging to all the players.

However, he admits he has a favourite.

"Whit Hornsberger [is my favourite]," he said. "He's the captain."

Bill's job is very important to the team, because he makes losses and frustrations seem small. He is rarely in a negative mood so he inspires and encourages players when they need it most. In his words, it all amounts to "teamwork."

Bill is undeniable proof even humble water boys can make a huge difference.

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Comments

I remember when I saw Bill at Aberhart he never wore that helmet...ever. Why now? I have NO idea...