Former NBA player: Romo could have made it in hoops

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We learned over the weekend that Tony Romo will be on the bench with the Dallas Mavericks for their regular-season finale on Tuesday night. It's a nice gesture toward one of the city's great sports stars, and anyone who complains about it should be shot into outer space.

Speaking of Romo and basketball, did you know that No. 9 could ball? That according to retired NBA journeyman Caron Butler, who, with Romo, made up two pieces of the All-Racine County (Wisconsin) boys' basketball team in 1998.

"Believe it or not, man, when we were in the prime of our careers, I used to always talk about it: (Romo) could have easily been a professional basketball player," Butler told ESPN. "And a lot of people were like, 'Man, you're crazy for saying that,' but Tony could shoot. He could handle the ball. He had a knack for scoring, man, he really did."

Romo filled up stat sheets like Magic during his days at Burlington High School. He averaged 24.3 points, 8.8 rebounds and 4.7 assists per game, graduating as the school's all-time leading scorer.

"He was a really good football player, obviously, being a quarterback," Butler continued. "He was great at golf. And he was really good at basketball. Obviously it worked out for him with the football, but I wouldn't have been surprised if he would have made it playing basketball. He had a great feel for the game, man.

"And it's not surprising. Golf is a cerebral game; you gotta have that mental component to conquer the course. And then football's the same thing; you gotta be able to think on the fly and do all these things. And then basketball, I thought, all those components worked together."

According to ESPN, Romo was recruited by several mid-major schools before he committed to football at Eastern Illinois. Unless you're speaking to his left clavicle, everyone will agree Romo made the right decision to follow his gridiron dreams.

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