McKinley Wright is making a name for himself with his crazed playing style, his myriad clutch moments, and his famed mental toughness. The nation media is taking notice too. The latest story on Wright comes from the Athletic’s Nick Kosmider, which you can read here.
In short, the article is about McKinley Wright’s life and growth through the sport of basketball. Wright’s fearlessness and commitment that he learned growing up make him the player he is today. That player could eventually become the G.O.A.T. of Colorado basketball, an honorific that would mean surpassing someone Wright grew up modeling himself after, Chauncey Billups.
The article also touches on how Wright came to Colorado after having been committed to Dayton until Archie Miller left the job last summer. Kosmider writes:
Wright was suddenly starting from scratch, with only weeks to find a program. If he didn’t, he was staring at beginning his career in junior college, a far cry from the stability he thought he had locked in with Dayton. Recruiting relationships are often built on years of communication, each text and phone call serving as building blocks for a trusting bond. Boyle didn’t have that luxury. So he did the one thing within control. He showed up on Wright’s doorstep.
Once Wright was on campus, it was obvious he would do great things.
“When you evaluate basketball players — shoot, any athlete for that matter — you talk about the it factor,” Boyle says. “It’s hard to define it. It’s hard to characterize it. You’ve got it or you don’t. McKinley Wright has the it factor. I don’t know how else to explain it in terms of how he’s different than most players. He’s got an unbelievable ability to bring guys together.”
Wright spent much of his moving around, from state to state, from team to team, but in Colorado, he finally feels at home.
This time last year, Wright was just beginning to gain his footing in a new place. Now, the 19-year-old feels as at home as he ever has. He continues to grow his relationship with the coach who cut his vacation short, determined to become even more of an extension of Boyle on the court. In English, Wright has found an “older brother” figure. “We joke around and mess around a lot,” Wright says. “He gives me crap, I give him crap.” He’s also surrounded by a cast of teammates — “my brothers,” he calls them — determined to bring something special to a Colorado program that is aiming for its first NCAA Tournament win since 2012.
These quotes are my personable favorites — there’s so much more to the article and I implore you to read it in its entirety.