“It all started in Phoenix, Arizona where I was born. I was only there for a short amount of time my mother always told me if I stayed in phoenix I wouldn’t be where I am today mentally because of my father that was absent all my life. I considered my older sister and my mom as a father figure to me as well as what they already were. So my mother packed my older sister and me up and literally left everything we had in phoenix and moved to a small City in Idaho called Glenns Ferry. In such a small city it was easy to excel in sports. I was a lot bigger, stronger, and faster than a lot of the other kids in the community so I never really had to work to be great. I gained a lot of recognition through my High School career when it came to football and basketball receiving scholarship letters from a lot of different schools and All-State Honors and awards. Only thing I had on my mind was D1 NCAA. It was D1 NCAA or nothing. Well, I waited and waited and the offers never came from the D1 schools and I felt I had failed knowing I would have to settle for a smaller school. I still hadn’t made the decision between football or basketball, it wasn’t until the last minute I chose to put everything I had in basketball and let football be nothing more than a memory.
I chose to attend Walla Walla Jr. College. It wasn’t until I got to college that I realized that everyone around me was just as athletic and strong as I was and I struggled with that because I was always use to being the most athletic player on the court. My mind set was still the same after my two years at a Jr. College it was D1 or nothing. Well, after my two years I had received only two scholarships offers both from NAIA school so once again I thought I had failed.
I chose Eastern Oregon University to continue playing because I knew they at least played D1 teams. When I arrive on campus the coach initially wanted me to redshirt it wasn’t until I proved to him in practice that I was good enough to play in the season. This was the first time in my life where I hadn’t started for a team and I took it personal because coming off the bench wasn’t something I wanted to do. It wasn’t until mid-season when I finally got my chance to start from coming off the bench and producing in the minutes I got before. That year at Eastern Oregon we were ranked #1 in the nation finished with the best record in school history and made the national tournament. I went from potentially redshirting, to a bench player, to a starter and was voted Defensive Player of the year for the entire conference.
After my career at EOU I wanted to take my chance at playing professional. Some of my teammates looked at me like I was crazy for saying that. My EOU senior year head coach even told one of the teammates that he loved me as a person but I just wasn’t good enough to play at the next level. Didn’t matter to me I moved back to phoenix and worked out with a professional trainer named Adam Wilson. I worked out the whole summer developing my game countless hours in the gym, mostly my offensive game because I was only known as a defensive player in college. This is where I really learned the skill and work ethic it took to become great. There is a lot of mental preparations as well as physical to play at a higher level and Adam installed than into me. Later that fall I got my chance to play in a summer league in Lebanon (Asia) to show case my talent for teams to sign me. After about two months in Lebanon I hadn’t been signed and returned home and it was at that time I almost gave up on basketball. Some of my closest friends told me that I would be just like every other athlete that never knew when to give up on a lost dream. Than replaying what coaches and teammates had told me. It was than when I decided they were right and started looking for a regular job. I was working for an insurance company and after a week of working I told myself this isn’t for me. This isn’t the life I pictured for myself knowing deep down that I was good enough and it was at the exact moment that I literally put everything I had into basketball and that upcoming summer. I was in the gym multiple times a day working on my own craft over and over and remembering what my friends, coaches, and teammates told me and how my whole life I felt like I had failed to reach where I wanted to be. At the same time I was reaching out to different players overseas and teams, sending my film out waiting to get another opportunity. It wasn’t until late July when an agent got in contact with me through a friend that was playing in china and wanted me to sign with his agency (LUBasket). I instantly said yes and within a month he had a contract for me from a team in Spain that saw something in me that other people didn’t. After everything I had gone through and how many times I had to prove to people I was good enough and myself I broke down and cried because I knew that I was so close to giving up. So close to letting people around me tell me what I could and couldn’t do. A week before I signed my contract officially my Grandpa passed away and a week after that my cousin was killed. So this contract was such a blessing to me with everything I was going through emotionally.
This season in Spain our team (CB Cazorla) is ranked #1 in the EBA D classification and currently leading the group in playoffs. This is the best and furthest the team has gone in the history of the organization. I’m averaging 10.5 Ppg 6.1 Rebs 3.3 Assists while shooting 54% percent from the field and 39.4% from 3 point. Recently in playoffs we secured an automatic next round spot with a win this last week in which I had 27Points 7 rebounds 7 assists. A championship is the only thing on our minds. For me it’s a blessing to be where I am and I don’t take any of it for granted. To be able to look back at everything I’ve been through and the things I had to overcome is beyond a blessing, it’s not taking no for an answer, its believing in your own vision even when other people can’t see it”.