With the regular season winding down, Outside the Huddle reached out to a handful of area senior boys basketball players. These players have spent 3-4 years on the varsity level. We asked them to tell us, in their own words, what they’d do different if they could go back to the start of their varsity careers, reminisce about their legacy and look forward to their final prep postseason. This is one such story:

IF I COULD GO BACK

If I could go back and say something to myself when I first started playing varsity basketball, I would tell myself to not let a bad game discourage me too much. Failure is an opportunity to find out how to develop my game. I would tell myself that if I didn’t  fail, then I will stop developing. 

I would also tell myself that my hard work will pay off, but only if I continue to work. My first year as a varsity player, we won two games all year. My high school basketball career was off to a really rough start. But, I worked hard and my teammates worked hard, and we set a school record for wins my junior year. I would encourage myself to continue waking up early on days even when I really didn’t feel like it. 

MY LEGACY

I hope to leave a legacy at Prairie Heights that I gave the game everything I had every time I stepped on the court, and not just the games. My goal was to come to practice every day and to leave the gym better than I was when I walked in. I want future players at Prairie Heights to have the same mentality. The hard work starts in practice and your own time, and then it will translate to the games. 

I want future players at Prairie Heights to love the game as much as I did. I want them to focus on aspects of the game that they can control, and to always treat officials, opponents and fans with respect. I also want them to play to win every game. Society today says just have fun, be happy with the results and everyone will get a participation prize, but I disagree with this statement. You should always play in order to beat your opponent. 

MY FINAL POSTSEASON

I want to enjoy every moment I have on the court with my best friends this postseason. I enjoy every moment I get to play with my teammates, but after this year, it will all be over. This postseason, I am going to soak in all of the moments that I have on the court with my best friends.

I want to thank my coaches, teammates, and all of the fans that come to the games. It is an honor to play at Prairie Heights, and I am glad I was able to represent this great community.

– Mike Perkins, Prairie Heights Class of 2020

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