Brixton TopCats

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Brixton TopCats
Leagues Men's:
EBL Division 2
Women's:
Women's British Basketball League
Founded 1985
History Brixton TopCats
(1985-1986)
Lambeth TopCats
(1986-1987)
Brixton TopCats
(1987–present)
Arena Brixton Recreation Centre
Location Brixton, London
Team colors Red and White
         
Website brixtontopcats.org
Uniforms
Kit body thinblacksides.png
Home jersey
Kit shorts blacksides.png
Team colours
Home
Kit body thinblacksides.png
Away jersey
Kit shorts blacksides.png
Team colours
Away

Brixton TopCats is a British basketball club based in the Brixton area of London. Established in 1985, the Men's first team currently compete in the English Basketball League Division 2, and the Women's team compete in the Women's British Basketball League. The club is particularly notable for its highly rated development programme, which has produced the likes of Luol Deng, Ajou Deng and Ugonna Onyekwe in recent years.[1] The TopCats are based at Brixton Recreation Centre and since 2009 operate a partnership with London South Bank University.[2]

The club has a high profile nationally and has received visits over the years from HRH Prince Charles, Princess Diana, Michael Jordan, Allen Iverson, Robert Horry, Lennox Lewis, Ian Wright and Kate Hoey MP. The clubs’ founder, owner and General Manager, Jimmy Rogers is recognised as a community leader and is respected globally in basketball circles. The club has been placing players into educational institutions for over 20 years both in the USA and England, and is proud of its alumni who have been successful both on and off the court.

Club History[edit]

Brixton Basketball Club was officially formed in 1984, although its roots are far older than this. The club is a cornerstone of the local community and has impacted on the lives of thousands of inner city children in the last quarter century, while amassing a trophy cabinet and alumni to rival any club in the country. Founded against the backdrop of race riots in England in the 1980s, the club’s mission is to provide high quality opportunity for young people in South London, both on the court and in the wider areas of life. The 'TopCats' nickname was inspired by the cartoon of the same name, relevant for its parody of the relationship between young people in the community and the Police.

The club claimed the National Founders' Cup in their first year, immediately joining the National Basketball League for the 1985-1986 season, where they impressed early on with high-placed finishes in Division Two before a second-placed finish in 1988 saw them step up to Division One. The following year brought the club's first major honours, as they beat Birmingham 92–79 to claim the National Trophy at London Arena. While it would be several years before their next taste of silverware, the TopCats became mainstays of Division One for almost the whole of the 1990s, regularly appearing in the end-of-season playoffs and finishing as runners up twice.

The turn of the millennium saw a downturn in the club's fortunes, finishing bottom of Division One with a 2-24 record in 1999, and suffering relegation to Division Two. The start of the 2000-2001 season saw even more turmoil for the club, as the National League was reformatted with the launch of the short-lived NBL Conference. This saw the TopCats kept back the new Division Two, which was now effectively the third tier of English Basketball. A resurgence started in the 2002-2003 season, coinciding with the league being rebranded as the English Basketball League, as the club won the Division Three (South) title and beat the Manchester Magic's second string 83-76 in overtime to take the National Shield.

For financial reasons, the club declined promotion, remaining in Division Three for another five years before another league-and-shield double was brought home in 2009. This time, the club stepped up to Division Two, and made it back-to-back promotions by finishing second in Division Two. Even after the second promotion in two years, the best was still to come, as the club won their largest honour to date in their first season back in Division One, winning the National Cup with a 77-63 victory over the Bristol Flyers. However, a disappointing 2012-2013 season saw the club drop back down into Division Two, where they have remained since.

Club Honours[edit]

TopCats' Junior and Senior teams have been mainstays of the National League since 1985, winning many trophies and championships along the way.

EBL Division 3 (South) League Champions

  • 2004, 2009

National Cup Champions

  • 2011

National Trophy Champions

  • 1989

National Shield Champions

  • 2004, 2009

National Founder's Cup Champions

  • 1985

Season-by-season records[edit]

Season[3][4] Division Played Won Lost Points League Playoffs National Cup National Trophy Patron's Cup National Shield
Brixton TopCats
1985-86 NBL Division 2 22 15 7 30 4th 1st Round Semi-final DNQ DNQ
Lambeth TopCats
1986-87 NBL Division 2 18 11 7 22 5th 2nd Round Quarter-final DNQ DNQ
Brixton TopCats
1987-88 NBL Division 2 18 14 4 28 2nd Runner-up 1st Round Runner-up DNQ DNQ
1988-89 NBL Division 1 20 17 3 34 2nd Semi-final 1st Round Winners DNQ DNQ
1989-90 NBL Division 1 22 19 3 38 3rd Runner-up 2nd Round Runner-up DNQ DNQ
1990-91 NBL Division 1 22 10 12 20 9th DNQ 2nd Round 2nd Round DNQ DNQ
1991-92 NBL Division 1 22 13 9 26 4th Semi-final 2nd Round Semi-final DNQ DNQ
1992-93 NBL Division 1 22 11 11 22 7th Semi-final 2nd Round Quarter-final DNQ DNQ
1993-94 NBL Division 1 18 10 8 20 5th Quarter-final 3rd Round Quarter-final DNQ DNQ
1994-95 NBL Division 1 22 13 9 26 5th Quarter-final 2nd Round Quarter-final DNQ DNQ
1995-96 NBL Division 1 22 9 13 18 7th Runner-up 1st Round Quarter-final DNQ DNQ
1996-97 NBL Division 1 26 7 19 14 12th DNQ 2nd Round DNQ DNQ
1997-98 NBL Division 1 22 4 18 8 12th DNQ 2nd Round DNQ DNQ
1998-99 NBL Division 1 26 2 24 4 14th DNQ 3rd Round DNQ DNQ
1999-2000 NBL Division 2 24 17 7 34 4th 2nd Round DNQ DNQ
2000-01 NBL Division 2 24 6 18 12 11th DNQ DNQ DNQ Quarter-final
2001-02 NBL Division 2 South 16 7 9 14 6th DNQ DNQ DNQ 2nd Round
2002-03 NBL Division 2 South 14 7 7 14 6th DNQ DNQ DNQ Runner-up
2003-04 EBL Division 3 South 18 16 2 32 1st Semi-final DNQ DNQ Winners
2004-05 EBL Division 3 East 18 9 9 18 7th DNQ 2nd Round DNQ DNQ Runner-up
2005-06 EBL Division 3 South-East 16 6 10 12 7th DNQ 1st Round DNQ DNQ 1st Round
2006-07 EBL Division 3 South 16 11 5 22 3rd Quarter-final 2nd Round DNQ DNQ 3rd Round
2007-08 EBL Division 3 South 22 7 15 14 11th DNQ 1st Round DNQ DNQ 2nd Round
2008-09 EBL Division 3 South 24 20 4 40 1st Runner-up Semi-final DNQ DNQ Winners
2009-10 EBL Division 2 20 15 5 30 2nd Quarter-final Quarter-final DNQ 1st Round DNQ
2010-11 EBL Division 1 18 8 10 16 5th Quarter-final Winners 1st Round DNQ DNQ
2011-12 EBL Division 1 24 11 13 22 9th DNQ 3rd Round Quarter-final DNQ DNQ
2012-13 EBL Division 1 26 3 23 6 14th DNQ 2nd Round 1st Round DNQ DNQ
2013-14 EBL Division 2 20 12 8 24 4th Semi-final 2nd Round DNQ 1st Round DNQ
2014-15 EBL Division 2 22 10 12 20 7th Quarter-final 2nd Round DNQ 1st Round DNQ

Notable Former Players[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Deng's dedication breeds success". BBC.co.uk. 
  2. ^ "Brixton Recreation Centre". ballersnetwork.com. 
  3. ^ "Brixton TopCats History". pawprint75.co.uk. Archived from the original on December 26, 2008. 
  4. ^ "League Table History". Basketball England. 

External links[edit]