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CJ Wilson

Professional Basketball Player in Sweden

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Written by Malik Brown

"I'm originally from Portland, Oregon. I moved to Georgia when I was 14 years old, and it was a complete culture shock. It’s totally different than anywhere else I've ever been. I definitely felt alone because I didn't have any family here. When we made the move, it was just me and my mom. I made friends through sports whether it was football, basketball, track, or any sport I could be a part of. That's what I wanted to do.


I was recruited pretty heavily in high school for basketball, but ended up not going to anyone due to adult mishaps. Some college coaches were telling people I was signing here and committing here. Other schools pulled their offers, and now things were back at square one. It's a part of the business, which I understand, but I got the short end of the stick. 


At the end of your senior season, you kind of start to look and see something isn’t right. So I ended up opening my recruitment back up to other options because it's almost graduation and it’s time to decide where to go. Young Harris was not at the top of my list at all. I was down to Columbus State and Young Harris. I told my college coach the day of graduation that I flipped a coin to decide where I was going to school. He called me and I told him I needed to make a decision because signing day was the next day. I went to the bathroom and flipped a coin. Heads was Young Harris and tails was Columbus State. It landed on heads, and I called the coach from Young Harris and told them I was coming. 


My freshman year, I was two votes shy of winning Freshman of the Year, didn't win. My sophomore year was also pretty good, and we were pretty good. I said, this is it, I'm out. I go in to tell them I'm not coming back. To do that, you have to get permission to leave from your coach, your athletic director, or the president of the school. They all said no, and I was confused. I waited about a week or two, because I had Division 1 schools already calling and were interested. After that it was more so of a are they're going to drag this out, and you're going to be stuck here. Which makes sense for them. But it didn't make sense to me. 


I think my biggest advice would be don't be jaded by the business side of things and actually do something that you like to do and enjoy. Another thing would be make sure your decisions are your decisions, and they're the best ones for you. I don't think that's something that I did growing up. I think I made the decisions that people wanted me to make and knowing what I know now, I definitely would have done a lot of things differently."

Creative Credits

Creative Direction: Nia Symone //  Tyrone McClendon

Video Editor x GFX Designer // Ethan Garner 

Photographer // Scoot Took It

Writer // Malik Brown

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