Coach Franck encourages us to strive for success in our goals on the basketball court. However, he wants just as much success off the court as well and he always reminds us to put education first. I remember the first couple of weeks at my academy, where he found out I had a poor start to my college academic year and couldn't keep up with homework. Without hesitation he suspended me from team practice and games for 2 weeks until I got back on track with the subject that I was failing in.
From then on whenever I was behind in class, I was comfortable asking him to miss practice just so I can get my studies right.
Another time coach Franck helped me, is with my basketball career and future after national league and college. Attending hoop group summer of 2019, was the best thing I could've have done basketball wise and coach Franck was the one to set it all up and he even saved me about $500 so that my parents could afford my trip to America. Even more so, he put my name out in the basketball community, to the extent that I was able to be selected for Deng camp and now I'm ranked 11th In the country because of his gift of opportunity. I wouldn't want any other coach.
Coach Franck is an amazing mentor off and on the court. He has been coaching me for 4 years where he has taught me discipline, given me more confidence and how to be more respectful to my teammates and to my parents. Last year, Coach Franck put me and 4 of my friends attended a Positive Role Model workshop where we had to present ideas for making our community better.
This raised my confidence a lot. Without him, I would be shy, disrespectful to my parents and be unhealthy. Coach always makes sure education comes first and makes sure I stay on top with my homework. I would like to say thank you to Coach Franck for always supporting me for the last couple of years.
Coach Franck came to my school when I started year 9 and did basketball sessions every single morning, as well as after school Tuesdays and Thursdays. I always liked basketball so I decided to go. From the first day I went I realised it was going to be extremely intensive and challenging. The first thing I remember doing was 10 laps with a timed target of 1 minute as a warm up. At the time as a player I wasn't good but I definitely wasn't the worst but what I realised that was holding me back was that I was very unfit.
I was chubby and had bad stamina, so every time I did 10 laps I was always one of the slowest, doing it in just under 2 minutes. I knew if I didn't do anything about it I wouldn't improve.
The constant pushing and motivation Coach gave me and the people who were training to keep going and not give up, helped me begin my weight loss journey.
Even though training alone helped me lose a lot of weight, it wasn't enough so at least 3 times a week I would work on my fitness and workout at home. I would do a lot of press ups, skipping and go running on occasion as well as playing more basketball outside of school.
Over the last 4 years I lost a lot of my fat weight and replaced it with muscle by constantly working out and playing basketball whilst keeping myself motivated to carry on. Last year during year 11 I thought that if I can apply this work ethic towards basketball and working out, I could also do this with academics. By the end of the year, I came out with 2 As and 6 Bs for my GCSEs.
For everyone that is going through the same struggle that I did with weight loss, getting better at basketball and school, just remember if you put in the work and never give up, you can achieve greatness! It's not going to be instant, so you need to be prepared to put in the effort to see results. I thank Coach Franck for giving me this mindset which is what guided me through all of this. If he hadn't come to my school and inspire me, I don't think any of this would have been possible.
Positive Role models has been critical in helping me achieve my goal by signing my first professional rugby contract. I've known Coach Franck since I was 14 when I first started playing basketball. When I went my separate ways with basketball to pursue rugby, instead of turning his back on me, he wished me luck. He took me under his wing, helping me and helping me to stay out of trouble. Coach Franck became more like a mentor to me, giving me advice of where to go next and what the best step might be for me. Again, when I left to go to boarding school, he would call me to check how not only my rugby was going but also how my studies were going. Coach Franck instilled a lot of emphasis on doing well at school. An individual may have the biggest dreams of playing in the NBA but he tells everyone he works with that education is the foundation to everything.
I believe that Coach Franck and positive role models have been truly instrumental in the person I am today and without them who knows where I would have been today.
Coach Franck has been there to support and motivate me. On the court he is very active and gives me a lot of help. Off the court he is very relaxed and a lot of fun to be around, constantly making jokes. He spends time with us individually and he is in constant contact with my school to ensure I am working hard in lessons which keeps me on my toes. It keeps me focused and determined.