Published on Friday, 04 July 2014 00:00
Too many times, we give ourselves limitations by coming up with various excuses as to why we are either not ready, or can't possibly reach our goals. Your dreams are only unattainable because you make yourself think so, but in actuality, if you put everything into it, love what you do wholeheartedly and work relentlessly towards your goals, you can achieve things beyond your wildest dreams. Just ask this 9-year-old basketball prodigy who is so good, she has already been approached by Miami University who have asked her to keep them in mind when the time comes for her to make her college choice.
While most children her age are struggling just to learn how to not trip over their own feet in gym class, 9-year-old Jaden Newman is already playing basketball like a NBA pro. She is such an awesome basketball player that Miami University got wind of her skills and have persuaded her to consider them next time when she is choosing a college to get into. Getting recruited by a college is no easy feat, especially when you consider how young Jaden still is.
Jaden has gotten so good at basketball that playing with kids her age poses no form of challenge whatsoever. She has played along older players in two seasons on the girl's high school varsity team at Downey Chritian School, a private school in Orlando, Florida. Even though she might be short now, that has not stopped her from getting mind-blowing stats. Standing at just 1.35m, she has averaged 14.5 points and 7.5 assists per game while playing against teenagers this past season. Her performance gained her national prominence, and now that she has the offer from Miami University, she’s believed to be the youngest female player to ever get recruited by a Division I program.
When Jamie Newman, Jaden's father and coach of her basketball team, received the call from Miami assistant coach Derrick Gibbs, he admitted that he was surprised they were asking for Jaden, “I thought it was for my son. I understand why, though, because she has an amazing skill set at 9 years old, and her potential is through the roof.”
When asked if the college attention would increase the pressure on Jaden’s performance, Jamie said he wasn’t too worried about that. “She’s so level headed. She’s on the right path with colleges already looking at her.” Jaden agrees with her dad: “I just feel like a pretty normal fourth grader. I’m just gonna keep practicing and keep doing what I’m doing now.”
When toddlers were just getting the hang of walking, Jaden was already shooting hoops at 3-years-old. According to Jamie, he and his wife were the ones responsible for instilling a sense of passion for basketball to their children. Jaden's dream is to play for the defending national champion, University of Connecticut, and it seems like she is already halfway there!
“Kids like to play Xbox and Playstation, or be on Instagram and Twitter, but she wants to play basketball,” said Jamie. “She’s gifted with that passion and drive that she has.” Her brother Julian, 12, is also a basketball prodigy – the sixth grader played on the Downey Christian varsity boys team this winter.
So far, Miami has been the only school to contact Jaden with an offer; the Hurricanes sent her an official recruiting letter in April and she has been to the University on an unofficial visit since then.
“They showed me around, they showed me their basketball court, and they showed me all of their campus. It was nice,” she said. But she has nine more years to go before she gets to college, and Jamie is quite aware that a lot can change in that time. “Coaches come and go all the time, so the whole staff could change two or three times in that time frame.” Recruits do not actually sign a binding national Letter of Intent until their senior year of high school.
“Especially with the recruiting game, though, I can see why Miami did this. She does stuff some college girls can’t do. When she gets older, bigger and stronger, I could see why a college would want to put that name out there and build that relationship,” said Jamie.
Hopefully this story will inspire you to shoot for the stars like how Jaden shoots hoops. Check out the video below to see Jaden the 9-year-old basketball prodigy in action!
Information Source: Today