Hi Teammates!

I had a conversation with someone yesterday and we were talking about certain moments in our lives that happened for a reason. If those moments hadn’t happened, we wouldn’t be where we are today. I thought long and hard about that conversation, which led me to the topic of this blog. I especially theorized about the moments during my basketball career that were game-changers…the pieces of the puzzle. Probably the first was the summer before my senior year of college when I went on the AAU circuit and blew up. I went from an unknown tall (and skinny) dude with potential to a highly recruited player with the likes of famous coaches from Arizona, Wake Forest, Boston College, UNLV, Arizona State, and others, suddenly knocking at my door. The next piece of the puzzle came during my freshman season at Arizona. I remember it as if it were yesterday along with the emotions I went through when we played at Cal and I did not play. That set off the chain of events that would lead to me transferring after the school year. Who knows what would have happened if I stayed?

Then there was my sophomore year at Dixie Jr. College when I walked into the Food and Beverages Department to get an ID and I met Edie Seipp. Almost instantly, Edie would end up being my Utah Mom and eventually gave me the advice which led me to Southern Utah. She told me many times, “It’s ok to be a big fish in a small pond.” Some months later, those words would resonate in my head as I took an unplanned official visit to SUU. Coach Bill Evans rushed to get me a hotel room and I unexpectedly signed my letter of intent that same weekend. It was Sunday at 2:30 am at the Holiday Inn. In doing so I spurned the likes of Wake Forest, New Mexico State, Arizona State, Boston College, and another school I cannot recall that I already had scheduled visits to. My Hall of Fame status there confirms the big fish theory Edie. Next, there was a decision made due to my lack of patience. Instead of waiting for the Italian team (which shall remain nameless) to honor the contract they faxed me, I instructed my agent to find me any job, regardless of money, because I was tired of waiting. That decision got me on a plane to Austria where I promptly broke my leg less than three months after my arrival. That injury led me to live way longer than intended with my Austrian Mom Mrs. Walizadeh and her family. Not only did she begin my love of Persian food, but she taught me German, and nursed me back to health. Without her, I would have been back home in America for sure!

Also during those early Austrian years, I developed a friendship with Mike Coffin who was my teammate. He probably doesn’t know this, but he was one of the reasons I stuck it out too. Our families are close…I will forever be “Uncle Seen” to his oldest children and my son still calls him to this day. Towards the end of my career, probably the last of those puzzle moments came when I decided to take over as Head Coach in Jena and end my active playing career…midseason. It took two weeks for me to make that decision. But after a talk with my brother, I decided to go for it although I knew I was not ready for that step…but when is someone ever ready for such a step? It was the way my journey was supposed to go because it led me to coaching which was also influential for me staying in Germany. Looking back, it was a wild ride. Those puzzle pieces all fit and I am thankful that they did!

Thank you for taking the time to read my words!


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