This season has been one that will never be forgotten by the Proviso community. At the start of the season, the Proviso East Pirates were determined to do better than the previous year; in the 2011-12 season, we made it to the championship game, but came up short. We were determined to do better this year. However, at the start of the season I publicly lost my cool, which put me on the sidelines for two games. My actions hurt my team. It was a point where I was being labeled a thug, hoodlum, selfish, hot head, and anything thing else you could think of that is negative about a basketball player. All because of my passion and love for they game, plus me hating to lose. I apologized to my coaches and team, and have to say that because of them, we were able to regroup and continue the season and do well. I knew that person wasn’t me so I had to dig deep and change in order to show people what type of character Sterling Brown really has. Instead of playing angry, I made the decision to keep playing my game but with a more calm and relaxed attitude. The team won the next 20 games and we made it to state for the second year in a row. I was honored to be named to the All Area/All State team and was a McDonalds All-American nominee.
Going down state and coming up short from the ultimate goal twice in two years hurt. It’s one of the most painful things I’ve felt. I felt that we could have done better, and that we had the skills to win, but it just didn’t happen. However, I can say these two years have been two of the best seasons I have had. I had the opportunity to play for some of the best coaches in Illinois, including Mr. Donnie Boyce, Mr. Sherell Ford, Mr. Cedric McCullum and many other coach volunteers from the community. It was a blessing to play with some of the best high school players in the state, including starters Paris Lee, Jevon Carter, Kalen Fisher, Parrish McCullum, and Braden Jenkins. I’m especially grateful for all I learned last year from Keith Carter, who is now playing for Valpraiso.
As I look back on my high school career, I want to thank my coaches, teammates, and family. I thank my coaches for being hard on me to become a better player and putting me in the position to be successful. I thank my teammates because without them I would not have learned how to be a team player. Finally, I want to thank my family for showing me all the love and support they have given me; throughout this up and down season, they were always there for me.
Showing respect to your elders, keeping your cool, letting your game speak for itself, playing under control, and playing hard and aggressive are all things that I have learned over my high school career. They are all things I will carry over to the college level when I am at SMU playing for Larry Brown and the rest of the SMU coaching staff.
Sterling will be attending Southern Methodist University next fall.
Senior, Proviso Math and Science Academy