In 11 years since founding the D1 Ambassadors basketball club there have been many special moments. As a father, without question my own son seeing his goals realized of playing Division One basketball and subsequently obtaining his bachelor’s degree tops the list. I always say that the McDonald’s All American Honors won by John Henson is “sexy” but that each of our guys is equal and a player such as Reinier Strobos of New Braunfels Canyon going to M.I.T. arguably the world’s #1 engineering school is just as gratifying to me as the program founder. Last night added another chapter in the book. (Photos compliments of Baylor University)
Texas D1 Ambassadors and Copperas Cove (TX) multi sport athlete Robert Griffin III took home one of amateur sports biggest prizes. He is the 77th winner of the Heisman Trophy. His exploits at Baylor on the gridiron speak for themselves and are well chronicled. He has had an amazing career. It was both joyous and painful watching him kick the Texas Longhorns around last week which was a performance that likely cemented the Heisman for him. (I watched the game in Arizona at a Phoenix Texas Exes gathering).
There is however, another RG III that most casual fans do not know. An old friend of mine, Coach John Avritt was the girls basketball coach at Copperas Cove back about 8 years ago. Coach told me unequivocably that he had a freshman at the high schoool who just had to play for me. He could run, jump, dunk handle the ball and was an excellent team mate and top shelf person. As with many of our players, an endorsement of our program was given by the high school coach and Griffin was on his way with Texas D1.
His family were outstanding folks but I remember well his dad being firm on playing multiple sports so many times he had to juggle basketball with track and sometimes we’d miss him not being at hoops events. He had good reason though as he was a world class 400 meter hurdler and there was this other silly little thing getting in the way….FOOTBALL. Good choice, Robert although I believe anything you’d chosen would be done at a high level.
Griffin finished high school in December, enrolled at Baylor early not only for spring football but to run track as well. At a school with several Olympic Champions coming out of the 400 meter ranks (think multiple Olympic Champion Michael Johnson) he also made his mark on the football field. First he made it as a runner (1000 yards rushing as a freshman) and then as a passer/dual threat. Don’t be surprised if he turns down the millions from the NFL Draft to stay for his senior year and snag a Baylor Law Degreee while he’s at it. It’s not improbable for the straight A student.
Congratulations Robert and to his parents, Mr. and Mrs, Robert Griffin of Copperas Cove. We’re proud you wore the jeresy of the Texas D1 Ambassadors. As with all things you did it with class, dignity and a smile on your face. You have truly gone on to be an ambassador to your community of Copperas Cove, Baylor and Texas D1.-Coach Max Ivany and the D1 Nation Family.