Lauren Brill of WIVB.com reports that former Portland Trail Blazers center Greg Oden has a 13-year-old half-brother named "Baby" Joe Jones III who already stands 6-foot-6.
Joe Jones III, also known as Baby Joe, is only 13 years old. He is 6'6 and is expected to be seven feet tall. Baby Joe is not the first basketball player in his family. His father, Joe Jones Jr. played at Fairmont State and his half brother, Greg Oden, was the number one overall pick in the in the 2007 NBA draft.
Although Oden's father is usually listed as Greg Oden, Sr., his actual biological father was Joe Jones, Jr., who is also father to "Baby Joe."
Anthony Oden, who played college football at Arkansas before running into some trouble, is also usually listed as Oden's brother. The two share a mother but Greg Oden, Sr. is Anthony's father, making Anthony and Greg half-brothers too.
Though born in Buffalo, Greg Oden was long gone before he ascended to stardom. He was 9 when his mother, Zoe, moved him and his younger brother, Anthony, to Terre Haute, Ind., in 1997 shortly after divorcing Greg Oden Sr.
A plumbing and heating contractor in Buffalo, the older Greg Oden maintains a close relationship with the boys, who visit their relatives here as often as possible.
Greg and Anthony have always acknowledged the elder Greg Oden as their father, but Anthony and Greg are half brothers. Young Greg's biological father is Joe Jones, who also lives in Buffalo. He hasn't been a big presence in Greg's life and prefers to stay in the background. He has attended some Ohio State games and is proud of his son's accomplishments.
"There's a lot of pressure on him right now, but he's handling it well," said the 6-6 Jones, who also played college ball at Fairmont in West Virginia after a standout career at McKinley High School. "All the credit has to go to his mom for raising him up to be the man that he is. I think you can kind of see what he's going to be right now. I wish nothing but the best for him."
Zoe Oden, who raised the two boys on her own, said she never had any trouble with her sons because they never got into any outside the home.
Here's a great profile of Baby Joe from Rodney McKissic of BuffaloNews.com.
Then the whistle blew for the first scrimmage and the 6-foot-7, 200-pound 13-year-old stationed his big butt in the low post - the Bermuda Triangle for today's perimeter dominated generation - and started to carve out some space and a name for himself. With his size 17 feet and 7-foot wing span, he darted across the lane to block shots and set screens to the delight of the guards as the buzz increased like a live wire. The heat surged when someone mentioned the boy known as Jo Jo to his parents, coaches and friends, is Greg Oden's little brother.
Jo Jo, a seventh grader with a 3.5 grade point average at St. Augustine School in Buffalo, held his own at the Lucas Combine in Houston and at least one scout said of the 125 players invited to the event, he ranked in the top 50. That earned him an invitation to the Elite 125 National Camp on Aug. 10-11 in Nashville, where Jo Jo will compete against players who will be high school freshmen in the fall.
Jones said calls to Oden lately have gone unanswered and Jo Jo said he hasn't spoken to him "in a while" but he has his brother to thank for sparking his interest. He didn't show any passion for basketball until he went to see Oden play in Detroit against the Pistons when he was a rookie.
Clark Francis, the longtime editor of Hoop Scoop out of Louisville, said Jo Jo has good size but is raw. "The only reason we're talking about him is because he's big," Francis said. "He's Greg Oden's half-brother and that's the whole reason he's being discussed. But then again he's big, he's somebody to know about and he may get a lot better. The best way to put it is he's intriguing because of his size. He's not Greg Oden at that age. I saw Greg Oden at that age and he was pretty darn good."
Here's some more on Oden's biological father via Duane Cochran of TimesWV.com.
When Joe Jones starred on basketball court for Fairmont State from 1982-86, "Big Daddy" was one of his most popular nicknames.
Jones, who was 6-6 and weighed in the neighborhood of 260 pounds during his college playing days, was a force in the middle for Fairmont State. He averaged a team-high 18.6 points and 7.7 rebounds as a senior center during the 1985-86 season and garnered second-team All-West Virginia Conference honors. He finished his career with 1,323 points, which ranks 29th in school history, and 876 rebounds.
-- Ben Golliver | email@example.com | Twitter