While the morning festivities were originally planned to welcome the Hoopfest, it may as well have been declared Robert Hubbs III Day at the high school.
In October, Hubbs made a verbal commitment to become a Volunteer and attend the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. On Thursday, in front of special guests, DCHS administrators and more than 1,000 loud and supportive DCHS students, Hubbs signed a National Letter of Intent to make it official.
"This is awesome and I was glad to be able to get it over with and sign so I knew where I was going to be playing college basketball," said Hubbs. "It was real special to be able to have my family, my pastor, teammates and all my classmates here to see it."
Though Hubbs was the main attraction on Thursday just as he has been dating back to his freshman season, he said the hard work of preparing for life in Knoxville after high school graduation will continue.
While some teammates may be envious of one player garnering so much attention, Hubbs said the unit has been 'cool'. "We're really starting to click and playing well together. We know what we need to do to have a chance to win every night and that's what we want to do is win."
Hubbs was a heavily sought-after prospect and has been consistently rated one of the Top 15 players in the country. In becoming such a talented recruit, the business at the Dyersburg Regional Airport was a beneficiary due to a tarmac full of planes from all over the country touching down to get a look at Hubbs at DCHS according to Choctaw head coach Derek McCord.
"We've had planes fly in here from as far away as UCLA to as far south as Gainesville, Fla." said McCord. "It was crazy around here until he committed last month and it's been great for our school as well as our entire community."
The notoriety Hubbs has brought to the county has been a great experience for all involved, and McCord said Hubbs was well worth all the national rankings and the mass of attention that has come his way.
"Robert is a very deserving young man and he's so much more than a great player because he's a high-character kid that younger kids gravitate to. He's a terrific role model for kids all across the county as well as West Tennessee," added McCord. "I couldn't think of a better kid to be an ambassador for our county and our school to go on and excel at the college level than Robert Hubbs III."
While Hubbs is destined to have a bright future at Tennessee and beyond, on Thursday he was still the same kid that felt about the game the same way he did when the journey began his freshman season.
When asked what was left now with his senior season still in front of him, Hubbs flashed a million-dollar smile and said simply, "win a championship."
Chances are the task is a tall one, but with Hubbs on the floor leading a talented group of Choctaws, anything is possible.