When we think of high caliber athletes, we believe that these athletes have no time for anything except school and the sport in which they excel. Stellar athletes are as dedicated to their sporting craft, as if it were a high profile job-- of course minus the big pay check. Does Kentucky's Alex Poythress fit this mold?
These stellar athletes hone in on the task at hand and push through the training one step at a time. However, there are a unique set of athletes out there who can skillfully multi-task, dribbling many basketballs concurrently while carrying a load of other pursued adventures and interests.
When we ponder such an able class of athletic multi-taskers, 6’7” Small Forward Alex Poythress, (an officially signed Kentucky Wildcat) comes to mind immediately.
Surprised much? Well, this No. 7 ranked player on Scout.com's 2012 Top 100 has had to juggle two jobs, elite level basketball all while working at a fast food restaurant.
“I used to work at Wendy’s,” Poythress explains. It’s amazing how these paragons of athleticism all come from different backgrounds, different ethnicities and different experiences—job experiences, yet they all have one thing in common-- the ability to juggle multiple tasks successfully.
Poythress said initially going into the job at Wendy's, was simply for the fun of it, but eventually the experience became a valuable life lesson for this Wildcat.
“How I got the job, my friend applied and I did too..jokingly.. but eventually I got hired, and it was a pretty cool experience,” Poythress stated, “It gave me an experience and an insight into what life is really about-- kind of. I think the hardest thing I had to do was make chicken wraps," Poythress chuckled.??
Work, Work, Work, the value of its rote activities are trying at times, but the overall lessons about human nature are priceless, it can only further develop you into a persevering individual.
You would think that once he got a taste of this rigorous job, when the time came around for Poythress to shift his focus and energy to the demands of basketball, he would quit; well, I’m sure he can answer that for himself. "I had this job from October to April, worked even during my season,” Poythress explained.
Poythress proved to be a humble young man of character, dedication and diligence. He never gave up on his responsibilities, even if it started out as a joke, he took his role and obligations seriously. He proved that he was a person of action as he worked full force through tasks, truly showing his astounding work ethic.
It is hard to see how he was able to manage having a job while performing greatly on the court. “I don’t even know how I was able to have the job and play during my season honestly.” Poythress said.
Fortunately, Big Blue Nation fans will soon be able to see the benefits of all the hard work Poythress puts into developing his game on the hard court prior to the Wildcats season.
Until then, all we can wish is for Poythress to have many fond experiences at Kentucky, that continue to shape him as a person, help him grow more as a player, thrive as a student and develop ethically as a young man. And just maybe some of his teammates will get to benefit as Poythress, the restaurateur may slide in some delicious chicken wraps during the midnight snacks!
In the end, this should be a great journey both for Alex Poythress and Big Blue Nation. Why? Because what’s better than fast food…well Alex Poythress, of course!