(John McDonnell/The Washington Post)

The Times-Dispatch reported in 2006 that football coach Dave Clawson saw basketball coaches practicing with their team when the Spiders were down to seven healthy scholarship players that winter. He told basketball coach Chris Mooney that he had a few football players who would be happy to fill in, freeing coaches to coach.

Tim Hightower’s name surfaced. UR’s top running back in 2005, Hightower last week joined the Spiders basketball program. Hightower, a 6-1, 220-pound sophomore from Waldorf, Md., played two seasons of varsity basketball at Episcopal High School in Alexandria.

“Right now, we’re going to take it kind of day by day, see how he does,” Mooney said. “If he continues to improve or shows us something, maybe we’ll dress him [for games]. But right now, he’s just a practice player.”

Hightower continued to influence the Spiders basketball team after he left school; one-time star David Gonzalvez credited Hightower in 2010 with helping his transformation into a grown-up.

“What that guy did, it was amazing,” Gonzalvez told the AP of Hightower. “He almost took me in, he made me a part of his life as his little brother. We used to get up in the morning and we used to have Bible study early in the morning before school, like 6 in the morning, and then like at 9 at night. What he did for me, I can’t even put words to it.”

Anyhow, a few years back, various Redskins used to always argue about who showed best on Redskins Park’s basketball court. I don’t even know if that court is still there, but it’d be interesting to see how Hightower would stack up.