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Basketball phenom ready for the NCAA

Community ProfileBasketball phenom ready for the NCAA

Nic Anthony’s hard work and dedication continue to pay dividends as reflected by his recent commitment to Rider University which is part of the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball. However, the turning point in his career was a tournament he played in the United States while with the Peel Elite Squad from Brampton. “We went to Indiana and Kentucky [and] we were playing in this one tournament; it was an Invitational. And it was against a lot of prep schools from the US. We played two games and then the coach there got in touch with my coach afterward…asking to see if I wanted to play in Mississippi.”

From there, Anthony was recruited by the Grace Baptist Academy in Mississippi, yet a quick decision had to be made. “I was so excited because it’s always been my dream to play at the highest level of basketball I can. I was just excited for the next step in my journey. But it was [tough] for my family because I had to make [these] decisions quickly. And I had to leave within a couple of weeks after that.”

Nic Anthony during graduation from Raleigh Christian Academy. Photo courtesy @joeyvaradesigns.

Anthony played for Grace Baptist Academy for a year before realizing he needed to move on. “I was looking at the players ahead of me. And I was seeing what types of offers [they were getting]. I’m thinking, no one is really getting the [offers] that I want [by playing] here. How would I get the [offers] that I want? That was kind of my mentality. And from there, I made the switch.”

However, Anthony made the decision to transfer to Raleigh Christian Academy in North Carolina. Anthony says, “I’ve learned a lot from being there. I learned a lot as a person and as a man [and] grew as a basketball player. I developed as a point guard too because I had really good leadership from my coaches.”

Nic Anthony provided strong leadership during Raleigh Christian Academy’s run to the NACA 2022 National Championship. Photo courtesy Raleigh Christian Academy.

One of the key games that sticks out in Anthony’s mind was the one against Mount Zion Christian Academy while playing at Raleigh Christian Academy. “It was a close [one] the whole game. [I] ended up coming down the court with five seconds left. And I had a step back three to win the game. So that was a solidifying moment in my career and things kind of went up from there.”

Nic Anthony, surrounded by his team members after a Branford Hawks’ tournament win. Photo courtesy Nic Anthony.

Anthony, who started playing basketball competitively with the Brantford Hawks for about five years, reminisces about his key influence. “I’d say it was mainly my dad. [He] always had me playing sports when I was younger. And he really influenced me because [basketball] was his favorite sport. We’d always be playing and I’d always be at the park with him.”

Anthony is currently gearing up to play with the Rider Broncs Men’s Basketball team this September and explains the recruitment process. “It was actually a practice where Rider came down to watch me. My head coach was in contact with them [and] they said they liked what they saw. I went on an official visit not too long after that. I was [then] offered the spot.”

Nic Anthony has had a successful time at Raleigh Christian Academy. He recently scored his 1000th point in an Eagles uniform. Photo courtesy @joeyvaradesigns.

Anthony, who recently topped 1000 points for the Raleigh Christian Academy Eagles team, had a chance to review everything before committing to Rider with a seasoned basketball professional. “His name was Josh Young. He’s a 12 to 13-year pro [and] he played at Drake University. And I was talking to him a lot about choosing [a] college…what things [to] look for. And then I basically checked off my boxes, what I liked [and] what I wanted. Rider had everything I wanted.”

Anthony has had to make some life-altering decisions in order to make his basketball dreams come true. However, he urges many young players to stay focused and committed. Anthony simply states, “You can do it if you really put your mind to it. And once you realize that, just work your butt off and work towards that goal every day and you’ll get there.”

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