Beyond 'The Blind Side': S.J. Tuohy now a prep hoops leader

Just a year ago, Sandra Bullock was reveling in Oscar glory for her portrayal of Leigh Anne Tuohy in 'The Blind Side'. While the recent success of the film adaption of Michael Oher's life may make his high school adoption of the Tuohy family as his own seem like yesterday, it's instructive to keep in mind that the most famous chapter in Oher's amateur evolution occurred back in 2003-05, when the now-NFL star graduated from high school. That was a good six years ago, enough time for every character in that film to move on in their lives.

As everyone already knows, Oher now starts at offensive tackle for the Baltimore Ravens. Sean and Leigh Anne Tuohy still live in Memphis, with Sean Tuohy serving as a color commentator for the Memphis Grizzlies. Their daughter, Collins Tuohy, graduated from Ole Miss and, at age 24, has been branded a "philanthropic superstar" by at least one Memphis blog.

Meanwhile, Sean Tuohy Jr. -- or S.J., in 'The Blind Side' movie adaptation -- is following in the combined footsteps of his adopted brother and his father. The high school junior has emerged as an on court leader for the boys basketball team at Briarcrest Christian, the school that Oher made famous as an all-everything left tackle during his senior season.

Most recently, Tuohy dropped in 13 points to help the Saints roll past Nashville (Tenn.) Father Ryan, 58-44, and into the Div. 2-AA state semifinals held Friday in Nashville. The Saints lost that game to McCallie (Tenn.) High, 51-49, though that hardly took the sheen off an impressive season for Briarcrest.

"We worked to get everybody involved," Tuohy told the Memphis Commerical Appeal about his team's efforts in their most recent victory. "[Father Ryan] did what we thought they would do. But I didn't want to let my teammates down."

While Tuohy now prowls the halls of the school that his sister -- who was a state pole vault champion herself -- and adoptive brother once attended, he's found his athletic niche in the sport in which his father made his name. After all, Sean Tuohy, Sr. remains the SEC's all-time assists leader, dating back to his time as a point guard at Ole Miss in the 80s, a status which helped lead to his current position as a basketball commentator.

Like his father, S.J. Tuohy runs the point, averaging nearly five assists per game. His scoring came in flourishes during the playoffs after he was secondary scorer during the regular season -- the Crusaders' offense focuses mainly on working the ball through talented sophomore big man Austin Nichols and sharp shooters Chris Jones and Demarc Richardson -- but just like his father, the younger Tuohy's instinctive leadership has been a factor in Briarcrest's 19 victories, not to mention its berth in the state semifinals.

The accomplishments are a breakthrough for the youngest and least-publicized Tuohy, who to this point has been known simply as his father's son and Oher's favorite video game partner. Whether he wins a state title or not, S.J. Tuohy has put his own stamp on the family's athletic legacy, and the rich heritage left behind by his older siblings at Briarcrest.

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