My collegiate goals and aspirations are to be able to continue playing the game I love and at the same time receive the best education possible. I am fortunate enough to be able to play this great game at a level where I can make an impact not only on the court, but off it as well. The opportunities to be able to help and teach kids in my community through my High School team's summer basketball camps for underpriviledged kids has been one of the best experiences I've ever had. I had never realized what a positive influence I could have on these kids, until I starting helping at the camps. Being someone who can positively impact younger kids lives is just one of the benefits I've received from playing basketball.
The discipline required to be as good a player as I can be has helped me in the claasroom as well. There are a lot of distractions in high school that can negatively affect my work in the classroom as well as my play on the court. Having the drive and the desire to be as good a player on the court and off requires discipline and the ability to prioritize what is important in my life. After my family, my team and teammates come first. Undersstanding that what I do in the classroom and how hard I work on my game can have an incredibly positive influence on those around me. My goal is to lead by example in anything I do. If I can keep a teammate on the right path through my words and actions, then we all benefit as a team in the long run by reaching our team goals.
As far as my coaches, I am fortunate enough to play for one of the legends in the game. Rudy Carey, my head coach at East High, is somene who is not only knowledgable about the game, but is also someone who is helping me mature into a better young man. He along with all of the assistants are there to teach us the game and to help us all become better people. Outside of my parents, they have the most influence on helping me learn to become a better man and person. Finding a coach to play for in college who creates the kind of family atmosphere that I have experienced at East will be very important to me. What I've learned the most is that while the competition to play and contrribute in a meaningful way is fierce, at the end of the day we are a team and in order to be successful we have to find out how each of us can contribute best to our success. Whatever a team needs me to do to be more successful is way more important than individual statistics. While I know I can do other things on the court, my best skill is shooting. My ability to shoot helps open up the floor for others to do what they do best by creating more floor spacing and less traffic near the rim for our elite finishers. I occasionally will show some of my other skills to keep a defense honest, but ultimately my job is to help space the floor and hustle and play well on the defensive end by getting steals, rebounds and starting fast breaks.
As far as the game itself, I still have so much to learn and my goal is to keep playing as long as I can before looking for other opportunities in the business of basketball. I watch a lot of film on other teams and go to as many games as possible to watch other high schools play. That way I can see what other teams tendencies are so that should we play them in the season or in the playoffs, I will have a better understanding of their strengths and weaknesses. I realize that that between school, basketball and family time, I sometimes miss out on school social life. As far as the social aspect and missing out on parties, I have zero regrets. I suppose the best way to describe me is as a loyal friend, teammate and someone who wants to be the best person I can be. I know that finding the best fit on the next level will help me become the person I want to be and open up opportunities in whatever I want to pursue after getting a great education and team experience.