Braham's Dahlman AP Player of the Year
March 23, 2005
Next season is going to be much tougher for Isaiah Dahlman and the Braham Bombers, but it can't get any crazier.
"We were the most exposed team in the state," coach Bob Vaughan said, three days after his team was crowned Class 2A champions for the second consecutive year. "We didn't have to find them. They found us."
Fans, media, college coaches -- they all swarmed this sleepy town of about 1,200 people in east-central Minnesota to watch what many observers believe was the state's best team, regardless of class.
And while Braham's winning streak, now at 58 games, was an obvious attraction, Dahlman certainly bore the brunt of all this attention. The 6-7 small forward was named the AP Player of the Year for boys' basketball on Tuesday.
"I just played my game. I always have. That's just how I do it," said Dahlman, who averaged 28 points per game for the Bombers -- whose average margin in their 33 victories this season was more than 40 points.
Dahlman was the only junior named to the AP's first team. He was joined by Richfield guard Travis Brown, DeLaSalle guard Travis Bledsoe, Mounds View forward Travis Busch and Tower-Soudan center Steve Jamnick.
Dahlman's teammate, guard Josh Vaughan, was selected for the second team. His brother, Noah, was an honorable mention pick. Braham loses nine seniors from this year's squad, so the Dahlmans -- especially Isaiah -- will be even bigger targets for opponents come next season.
"It's going to be different, I know that," Dahlman said.
But as for more attention on Dahlman?
"It can't be more," Bob Vaughan said laughing, then praising his team for maintaining focus throughout what could have been a distracting season.
Six schools, all of them in the NCAA tournament this month, remain on Dahlman's radar.
, Michigan State, Illinois, Iowa, Boston College, Georgia Tech," he said, not necessarily -- but perhaps -- ranking them by preference.