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Wednesday, March 27th, 2013 at 12:45 pm  |  13 responses

Andrew Wiggins, Alonzo Mourning Speak About Gatorade POY Award

 

by Abe Schwadron@abe_squad

“I thought it was just a regular school day.”

About an hour after being named the 2012-13 Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year, SLAM 167 cover boy Andrew Wiggins was on the other end of the line, re-living the moment his history class became a press conference.

“I went to my first two classes. I was on my way to my third period class, history, and saw all these cameras and stuff. I just thought it was a local speaker coming to talk to the class,” said Wiggins. “Then Alonzo Mourning walked in. I was shocked.” Not to mention his third-period classmates—”They were starstruck,” he added with a laugh.

Zo and Gatorade surprised Wiggins at his high school, Huntington (WV) St. Joseph’s Prep, honoring the undecided senior with the POY award, recognizing outstanding athletic excellence, high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field.

After averaging 23.4 ppg, 11.2 rpg, 2.6 bpg and 2.5 apg and leading his team to a 30-3 record and Top-10 ranking nationally, the 6-8 Wiggins beat out a strong field of nominees, including Aaron Gordon, Jahlil Okafor, the Harrison twins and Jabari Parker, who won the award last season, to take home the hardware.

“I’m just blessed”

Wiggins joins Mourning, who himself won Gatorade POY honors in 1988, along with a list that includes Chris Webber, Stephon Marbury, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and Dwight Howard as winners of Gatorade’s POY.

“This award has grown to such prestige. The alumni is very rich and there’s alot of responsbility that comes with it. You receive this award and people expect great things from you down the road,” Mourning said. “This raises the ante a little.”

Even with that in mind, Mourning said he hopes Wiggins will realize basketball is temporary. “I said, ‘Don’t wait until the ball stops bouncing to prepare yourself for life after basketball. Start right now.’”

Wiggins described the moment Mourning handed him the trophy as one “I’ll never forget.”

Before heading back to his normal scheduled schoolday, we made sure to ask Wiggins about reaction to his SLAM cover. “People from Canada have shown me a lot of love, me being from Canada and being on the cover of SLAM Magazine,” he said.

And yes, we asked Wiggins about his college choice, too. He’s narrowed his college choices to Kentucky, North Carolina, Kansas, Florida State, but as of today, he hasn’t set a decision date (“No clue”). Right now, Andrew just has to get back to class.

Photo via Gatorade

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  • Chris

    What happened to article about Dwayne Wade getting no love from his Chicago? It disappeared…

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ben Osborne

    Congrats to Andrew!

  • BRAVO

    no your just blind.

  • http://twitter.com/niQknacks niQ

    Can’t wait to see him in the L.

  • bike

    “Andrew, I am your father”.

  • Max

    Andrew Wiggins is standing on top of something right?

  • trueballer4life

    the next lebron is here! go wiggins canada stand up!

  • http://www.facebook.com/chris.callihan1 Chris Callihan

    I don’t think so, i saw a few other pictures from the day, and he looks like he’s only an inch or 2 shorter than zo. Which i saw wiggins play in real life and he doesn’t even look 6’7, maybe shorter. So either he’s taller than he looks or zo is short as f*ck

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000166716900 Anthony Darnello Taylor Jr.

    Oh shit its Tyler the creator lol

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000166716900 Anthony Darnello Taylor Jr.

    Zo was listed at 6’10 so wiggins being listed at 6’8 makes sense.

  • http://www.facebook.com/chris.callihan1 Chris Callihan

    That’s true, but he played against my cousin’s hs team and he’s 6’5. Wiggins looked like the same height standing right next to him

  • ChrisClark502

    KENTUCKY HANGS ANOTHER BANNER NEXT YEAR! See you soon Andrew! ;)

  • http://basketball-performance.com/ Basketball Tips

    deserving kid. Respect!

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