Dedicated ISP Employee Coaches All-Girls Basketball Team,
Wins Big In Boys League
SPRINGFIELD—Illinois State Police (ISP) Firearms Services Bureau learned Tuesday of a secret weapon hiding away in their arsenal. Firearms Eligibility Analyst, Tariq Toran, reached national headlines coaching a fifth-grade all-girls basketball squad known as the Central Illinois Xpress with an impressive 8-2 record in boy’s league. The New York Times and the Today Show and several other media outlets featured Toran this week in exclusive coverage highlighting his team’s accomplishments.
Toran, a criminal justice major from Jackson State University, Mississippi, incorporates the ISP’s motto: Integrity, Service and Pride into every practice to imbue hard core discipline and precision. “Practices are very intense. The girls complete up to 130 pushups during the course of an evening. I train them the same way I do men’s basketball,” said Toran. “They have to be able to make quick decisions and everyone has got to have each other’s back just as they do in law enforcement.”
When asked why the team plays against boys, Toran points to a simple strategy, “I’m toughing them up by playing them against boys, so that they’ll be ready for anything that comes their way in the girls league.” The Central Illinois Xpress is a traveling team playing in venues across the Midwest in Detroit, Columbus, Indianapolis, and Chicago.
Toran has served in the ISP’s Firearms Bureau since 2013. His lifetime goal is to wear the ISP uniform and he is patiently waiting for the testing to open up so he can one day make even a bigger difference as an Illinois State Trooper.
“I have gotten to know Tariq as he frequents the workout room the same time many of us do over lunch hour. He always has a great attitude, sense of humor, smile, and an overall pleasant disposition you want to be around,” said ISP First Deputy Director Brian Ley. “He has obviously brought these attributes to his team as they exhibit incredible toughness and determination.”