Kennedy Bright & Kayl Auch
U-News sat down with senior forward Jordan Giles to discuss his life, his love for basketball and what it’s like coming from a family of college athletes.
Q: You’re from Tuscaloosa, Alabama, which is a major college town. What is that like as a kid growing up being around that kind of atmosphere?
A: Tuscaloosa is more of a football-oriented city, so the focus is more on football than basketball. My love is for basketball, so I had to find people that have the love for the game as much as I do.
Q: What is it like going to an Alabama Crimson-Tide game?
A: It’s all-around football; everything runs because of the football team. I can honestly say that Tuscaloosa is a great city to be in during football season. But after football season, it’s not all that.
Q: Coming from a family of collegiate athletes, what is it like to be carrying the torch?
A: It’s a great feeling because you never want to have the feeling of failing your family or that you’re not going to live up to what they lived up to. At the end of the day, they’re always going to support me no matter what I do. I have standards for myself, so it feels good to fulfill those standards.
Q: How has the fact that your dad played college basketball influenced you and your own basketball career?
A: It has always influenced me because he always pushed me to be the best I could be. He knows my talent and what I can do on the court. He’s never sugar-coated it with me, so I just like to say that he has all the faith in me that a dad should have, and I’m grateful for that. He really just told me to follow my heart and do what is best for me. At the end of the day, he’s going to support whatever decision I make.
Q: When did you first start falling in love with basketball?
A: I fell in love with basketball as soon as I knew what basketball was. My dad named me after Michael Jordan because the Bulls played the day I was born, and he had a feeling that I was going to like basketball because of it being a family thing.
Q: Who is your hero?
A: I would say that my hero is my dad. Other than a dad, he’s more like a brother figure. I can talk to him for whatever, and he’s always there for me.
Q: Do you have any superstitions or rituals?
A: Not really. I listen to music a lot before the game. Depending on how I’m feeling, I might listen to something different, something that you may not expect me to listen to before a game. Some days I’m listening to my Lil Uzi, my Gunna, all this trap music. But some days, I might listen to some slow stuff like Drake or Chris Brown before the game. It just depends.