As an absolute sucker for the inspirational, I put it upon myself to begin picking a corny yet inspiring quote to illustrate the possible season narrative for the many members of the Indiana Hoosiers basketball team. Following X and Jalen Hood-Schifino, for our third quote I am excited to be discussing a quote that I think could speak towards our captain this year. The man, the myth, the preseason all American, the Indiana Hoosier Basketball legend, Trayce Jackson-Davis.
Trayce Jackson-Davis was thought to have been a lock to head to the NBA last year. Mike Woodson and the idea of bringing Indiana into the forefront of the national consciousness have convinced him otherwise. He is the leader of our program. This team’s identity is his and Mike Woodson’s to set. For this reason I picked a quote from General George Patton. I believe Patton summed up a mentality that would serve TJD greatly when he said, ”Lead me, follow me, or get out of my way”.
Patton, as divisive a figure as some may try to make him, was a great leader of men. That is what we are asking Trayce to be for the Hoosiers this year. As our most veteran and most talented player (18.3 pts, 8.1 rebounds, 2.3 Blks, Come on now!) Trayce will be tasked on directing the rest of the team on and off the court. His attitude towards practice, games, and even his lifestyle choices will need to be a north star for the Indiana Hoosiers. His example needs to stand as the model to follow.
So “lead me”, I’m looking for Trayce Jackson-Davis to understand and trust the young Jalen Hood-Schifino to make plays as such a young talent. Knowing when to follow is a trait any great leader possesses. Look for TJD to know when to defer to the hot hand be it Jalen, Xavier, or anyone else handling the rock.
“Follow me”, Trayce Jackson-Davis has taken the reins of the Indiana Program and fully intends to get us where we want to go. Through his example of strong character and strong play, he will be able to set an example for the younger Hoosiers while also setting the standard to strive for in terms of work ethic and commitment to the craft. Trayce has been a large part in aiding Mike Woodson in “making IU cool”. Just keep being the Hoosier the rest will follow!
Lastly “get out of my way”, must I really elaborate on this one? I mean pretty self explanatory. If you are not on that court, in practice working towards a united goal of team success, we don’t have time for it this year. This is Trayce’s season to tear it up and bring some hardware home for his school. If a player can’t sign on for that, or is unable to put the result above themselves, I’d fully expect for Trayce to put it upon himself, even though I imagine Mike would cut it out first, to shut down any dissention within the Hoosier locker room. Trayce wants titles as bad as any of our most committed fans do, he will keep everyone honed in on the same objective.
I understand this is a lot to ask of the young man, but I have to believe he would gladly take that on. His sheer presence on campus had to have come with a personal understanding by him that this is HIS team this year. Where Indiana goes, Trayce Jackson-Davis will be held accountable, for better or worse. Cheers to TJD for stepping up to such a daunting task and taking his shot at reaching Indiana immortality.
LUX ET VERITAS!