By Melissa Morales
CCC Journalism Program
In a few weeks, the Camden County College men’s basketball season will be underway.
And for college athletes, there is no life other than the sport they love.
Two current basketball players spoke about life off the court. James Cooper, 21 of Cherry Hill, and Braxton Watson, 18 of Middletown, DEL., decided to attend CCC in hopes to get recruited to a 4-year school.
Cooper was recruited to Delaware Valley College last year; however, he hurt his knee while playing in a summer league. He came to CCC to play for the basketball team with hopes to get recruited again.
Watson didn’t have any schools looking at him to play for them. However, he believes that help from Coach Lou Abbattista he will achieve that goal.
To try out on the team you have to be a full-time student. Players who come to CCC to play for have talent, they live for basketball, and they respect Abbattista, who prefers to just be called Coach Lou.
These two young men are beyond full-time students, Watson is taking 18 credits and Cooper is taking 13. To the average student this might seem like a lot, but Abbattista gives his players study hall two days week for one hour.
Watson and Cooper do not work because they want to get good grades and play basketball.
When asked if they would like to have job in addition to what they have already committed, Watson said, “if it can pan out that I can balance school, work, and basketball, I will do it but it would be difficult.”
Cooper said “No, it will be too much”.
How can one keep focus with playing a sport that is so demanding and taking more than enough classes?
Cooper keeps focused by reminding himself about the goal at hand which is to play for a school with a larger basketball program. on a larger basketball. Watson said “My father says if I don’t get a scholarship I have to come back home and play basketball.”
Many college students have a social life, but Watson and Cooper said that their family and teammates are enough.
At CCC, the men’s basketball team isn’t just teammates they have a brotherhood, even off the court. Family,basketball and school that is enough for them at the moment, they said.
The regular season starts November 7th 2013. Full schedule http://www.region19.org/team/11/1/1775.php