Jan. 28, 2010
It was just one month and one day ago that Brady Heslip began his Boston College career. He arrived just after Christmas, fulfilling a lifelong dream. He hasn't stopped smiling since.
Below, in his own words, you can learn a little bit more about Brady Heslip. The 6-foot-1-inch guard is the newest addition to the basketball program.
On why he's here at BC and why now ...
I think I'm here because this was the right fit for me basketball-wise and academically. Personally I got along well with the coaches when I came on my visit and I thought it was a great place. When I learned more about it, I learned that it was even a better place than I'd initially thought.
I graduated from high school (Nelson High School in Burlington, Ontario) in 2009 so I really should have been in the 2009 class but I wasn't prepared to go to college that year. I hadn't taken the SAT test so my plan was initially to go to prep school to take that test and then sign with a school for next season, but it just worked out perfectly that BC had a scholarship available. I could go to a school, take the test, clear the (NCAA) Clearinghouse the first time and, when all that was in order, I could enroll early.
Describe your game.
I play the point. I like to get my teammates involved early. One of my biggest strengths is being able to shoot it, but I personally think my biggest strength is my basketball IQ. I think I can think the game through and make decisions better than a lot of people and I think my lack of speed and athleticism is made up for with my IQ. I don't think I turn it over very much. I can handle pressure and stay calm in intense situations. I really like to be a leader. At New Hampton I was a leader in my first year there. It was hard to leave.
On the possibility of redshirting this season...
That's my plan. I wouldn't want to waste a year of eligibility on just going in the game for a couple of minutes. I don't know the system perfectly yet. I'm learning it. I think it's better if I just redshirt, try to get stronger and more ready for the ACC.
His thoughts on sitting out this season ...
It's hard to watch when I think I could be out there contributing, but it'll benefit me in the long run not to do that so I can help the team for four years after this one.
His outlook on academics ...
I take school seriously. My plan is to get a degree in education because I want to be a coach when I'm done playing.
I couldn't wait for class to start so I could meet new people and learn new things. I had sat in on University classes before when I was here staying with Biko (Paris). I thought it was really interesting - the level of learning and how the professors speak. I think it'll be really good for me. That's another benefit of coming here early. I can get ahead in school.
On his family's influence on his basketball career ...
My mom's side of the family is all basketball. My grandfather played at the University of Windsor (Windsor, Ontario). He's just a great guy to meet. My uncle, Jay Triano, is the head coach of the NBA's Toronto Raptors. He allows me to work out with the Raptors in the summer and he just teaches me a lot of little ins and outs, things that I can use, things that can beneifit me on the court and off the court.
My dad (Tom Heslip) played at the University of Guelph. He really got me going from an early age. He's so competitive. That's where I get my competitive edge from, I think. He's the most competitive person I know.
What he's like off the court ...
I like to goof around a lot when I'm comfortable with guys. I like to make jokes and stuff. I'm friendly. I don't dislike anyone no matter what. I try to be nice to everyone.
On his semi-renowned sneaker collection (http://bit.ly/LSaOZ ) ...
That's a misconception. My Uncle Jay would be able to give me the shoes of guys who got traded, so Slam did an article on me for having pros' shoes, but it's not a big deal.
But I do have a bunch of shoes myself. I like sneakers. I like to switch it up. I probably have 10 pairs of shoes here right now.
On how he's feeling now that he's here ...
I just feel that God blessed me with an opportunity to play basketball. I was going to go to Guelph, but immediately after my commitment there I had a long talk with my AAU coach, Ro Russell, and he told me that's good, but that he knew that my dream since grade seven was to play in Division 1.
Until two years ago, I would have been playing at a low-major school, but I worked so hard. My work ethic was just better than everyone else's. I spent every night in the gym. I was thinking about basketball all the time. When I'd go out to eat, I would think about what I could eat that would make me a better basketball player.
Ultimately, I was blessed with the opportunity to show that I could lead my team and show my skills when some of the star players from my AAU team weren't there. We had a great summer. The whole summer was me getting the opportunity to fulfill my dream and come to a Division 1 school.
I know that without the people in my life that helped me, there's no way I'd be able to be here. That's why I'm so happy to be here.
I think I'm probably the happiest person in North America. I just don't walk around yelling it, but I'm really happy - all the time.