You don’t have to follow sports to know notice the Jeremy Lin inspired Lin-sanity that’s taken over your favorite website’s sports section. So what’s the fuss about? The 2011-2012 New York Knicks season savior, Lin is mixture of brains and brawn and has the possibility to rack in more endorsements than a pre-scandal Tiger Woods. Not enough time in your day to google why he’s popular
or why publications like ESPN are showing their racist colors? No worries, here are a few talking points to manage that next Jeremy Lin conversation.
Besides his genius, Lin is so attractive to popular culture because he is the first Chinese-American player in the NBA. You’re thinking ‘What about Yao Ming?’ Unlike his predecessor who was born in Shanghai, the Taiwanese Lin was born in Los Angeles and raised in a Northern California suburb called Palo Alto. Think of how exciting it was when Venus and Serena Williams were serving those tennis balls across the world! It is the same excitement for many Chinese-Americans who now have a local to admire!
Lin averaged a 4.2 GPA at Palo Alto High School and lead his team to a State Championship his senior season. Despite sending highlight tapes to his dream school Stanford University among others like UCLA where an assistant coach admitted he probably would’ve started for their squad, Harvard and Brown were the only institutions to guarantee Lin a spot on their basketball teams. At Harvard, Lin continued to excel academically as an Economics Major and graduated with a 3.3 GPA.
Harvard, like all the Ivy League schools, do not grant athletic scholarships so Lin had to personally fund his education. Despite setting numerous records at Harvard and averaging a little over 16 points his senior season, Lin was not chosen during the 2010 NBA draft. Soon he joined the Golden State Warriors but after sitting the bench he was released. Then Lin signed with the Rockets, where again he sat the bench and was released. Finally, he joined the New York Knicks and sat the bench there too until he was given a chance to play because a rookie point guard was hurt. Throughout this time Lin admitted to media that he’d been sleeping on his teammates’ couches and was uncertain of his future. With a degree from Harvard I’m sure there are plenty of financial firms that Lin could have worked for but Lin did not waiver and worked for every single minute that he plays on the court.
He may not be the Trey Songz of the NBA but only a hater would say that Mr. Lin isn’t cute! His humble personality shines in every interview and it’s obvious that he is doing what he loves. In an interview with ESPN reporter Rachel Nichols, the baller said “This year I said, you know what, I’ve given everything I can. I’m going to make sure I do it my way, and if it doesn’t get me where I want to go, I can live with that.” Brains, brawn, and a touch of both inner and outer beauty, we hope the Lin-sanity continues.
– Frances Harris