by David Cassilo / @dcassilo
Last summer, prior to his senior season, Mason Plumlee did not spend all day, every day in the gym. Instead, he took an internship. For four-to-five hours a day, Plumlee was learning about the world of finance as an intern with Barclays in Chicago.
“The goal of the internship was to make sure I’m not on the next 30 for 30: Broke,” Plumlee says, referring to a recent ESPN documentary about athletes who lose their money.
It was all part of his plan to maximize the effort in his workouts by spending less time in the gym.
“I would go hard in a shorter amount of time,” Plumlee says. “I got in, I lifted, I played, I did an individual workout.”
It doesn’t take a financial analyst to see Plumlee’s less-is-more workout schedule is paying huge dividends. Through Duke’s 22-3 start, Plumlee is averaging 17.6 ppg, 10.4 rpg and 1.6 bpg while looking like a strong candidate for ACC POY. Meanwhile, his stock has risen up Wooden Award rankings and NBA Draft boards, but that’s not much of a surprise to those who know him best.
“He wanted to be one of the best players in college basketball,” says his older brother, Miles. “He had very specific goals, and that’s one of them.”
Mason comes from a basketball family that hails from Warsaw, IN. Miles graduated Duke and is on the Indiana Pacers, while his younger brother, Marshall, is teammates with Mason.
Over Christmas, the Plumlee family had the rare treat of all gathering together at Miles’ place. As you would expect with three Duke attendees, the Christmas festivities included more than just eggnog and holiday movies.
“The go-to game is Blokus, which is a puzzle strategy game,” Mason says. “It’s pretty competitive.”
Back in Durham, the biggest piece of the puzzle in Duke’s title run is Mason. Although he won a Championship as a freshman, he wants a greater impact than the three minutes he played that night.
“It happened my freshman year, and I wasn’t necessarily in the role I wanted to be in,” he says. “I still have that goal.”