The Talon’s Jake McCabe interviewed sophomore Jalen Suggs and asked him various questions about school and sports.
When did you start playing basketball?
I started playing basketball ever since I could walk. I started playing on the little hoop that we had.
What do you enjoy most about athletics?
My favorite thing about playing sports is that it’s a way to let out all of my energy and just go have a good time. There’s nothing better than playing the game you love.
What are your main motivations for doing athletics?
My motivation for playing athletics is to help my family out and make things easier for them. We’ve never lived in the best circumstances and I want to make sure my family doesn’t have to worry about having an empty fridge or worry about things like that.
What are your short term goals (in the next 2-3 years) and what are your long term (in the future) goals in athletics?
Right now my short term goal in athletics is to win the state tournament every year, all the way out through my senior year. My long term goals are to go to college for free and become a professional in either the NBA or NFL.
What is your current training schedule like?
Right now I train by getting shots up before and after practice. I’m working on my upper and lower body right now and trying to get stronger because I feel like that’s the next step I have to take to become a better player. I’m continuing to watch film like always to become a smarter player too.
What kind of film do you study?
I study my games, NBA games, College games, and all kinds of basketball. I specifically watch film of certain players like Russell Westbrook, Michael Jordan, Carmelo Anthony and try to use pieces of their game in my own.
What are your expectations for this upcoming basketball season?
My expectations and everyone else’s on my team I believe is to win another state title. We have all but one person coming back and we’re gaining a lot of young talent as well as becoming an overall more mature team. We know what we have to accomplish and we are all ready to get started.
What’s it like having a target on your back every time you play?
Having a target on my back is nothing new to me. The only difference now is how big it’s getting. It only makes me a better player and competitor.
How has the recruiting process been going?
The recruiting process has been going well. The top schools in the nation are starting to show heavy interest in me and I’m just grateful for the opportunity. I’m really having fun with it and enjoying going on visits and having a good time.
What was it like playing for team USA this summer?
Playing for team USA was a great experience. It’s something that as a basketball player is one of the biggest accomplishments you can achieve.
What is your favorite sports moment?
My favorite moment was when we won gold in Argentina. They called my name and i stepped up and got my medal put around my neck while the banners were raised with the National Anthem playing.
Outside of athletics and school, what do you enjoy doing with your free time? And what’s something people probably don’t know about you?
Outside of athletics and school, I like to hangout with my friends, play video games and just live the same life as a regular teenager. I want other people to know that I’m a fun and good person to be around and more than just a stereotypical athlete.