From Backyard courts to sell out arenas


This week’s Alumni is West Valley’s own Joe Burton. He is a graduate of West Valley High School in 2009. The community remembers Joe for helping lead the team to a CIF championship. During his career at West Valley, he averaged a Double Double nearly 16 points and 16 rebounds per game. Joe was ranked in the top 100 of California high school basketball players and was offered a full-ride scholarship to play basketball at Oregon State.

While Joe was at Oregon State, he became the first player to have over 1,000 points, 700
rebounds, and 300 assists. He left quite a legacy up there, even getting the chance to meet President Obama and the First Lady when they came to a game. Joseph Burton is easily one of the most successful athletes that have come out of the valley, and his legend continues to grow.

Even though he went undrafted when his college career was over, he did not let that stop him from living his dreams. He took his talents overseas as an opportunity to keep playing the game he has grown up loving and travel the world while he was doing it. As a professional overseas he has played on teams in various countries including Denmark, Holland, France, and Japan.

Joe has won League MVP honors and helped his teams win championships. Now he is waiting for a new contract and is excited to go out to play basketball again.
Joe loves the game; it has always been there for him when he felt alone. Lucky for him, he also found an amazing woman to keep him company, and he eventually asked her to be his wife. Right now, they have a son and a daughter expected to join their roster at the end of this month.

As well as playing basketball, Joe started his own clothing company called Hunwut Clothing, which means “Grizzly Bear” in his language. It is a Native American based clothing company with Native American themes and designs. Joe hopes to create a non-profit organization when he is done playing basketball by using his clothing company and basketball contacts. For non-profit, his goal is to help Native American youth achieve their dreams.

Joe attributes a lot of his success to his mother and grandfather. His grandfather Charles “B-Bop” Silvas passed away last year, and his family and the Native American Community misses him.
Joe is thankful to his fellow Native Americans for all their love and support, looking to make them feel proud. He keeps grinding and working hard in hopes that one day he can live up to his grandfather’s legend.


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