LSU defeats UMBC

LSU freshman forward Trendon Watford (2) lays the ball in the basket during the Tigers' 77-50 victory over UMBC on Tuesday, Nov. 19, 2019, in the PMAC.

Interdisciplinary studies freshman Trendon Watford received his first recruitment call the summer before he went into eighth grade. Several years later, he's now in his freshman year at the University as a five-star recruit on the LSU Men's Basketball team.

Some might find it hard to stay humble after being recruited by top college basketball programs from a young age, but Watford said he tries to take it day by day. 

“I just try to enjoy the moment,” Watford said. 

Watford enjoys spending time with his family, which he says helps keep him down to earth. Watford said his parents taught him the importance of family.

Watford grew up playing basketball with his older brother, Christian, who played for two years at Indiana University and then went on to play in the NBA. From a young age, Watford played one-on-one matches with his brother, got up early in the morning to go to the gym with him and spent time around many talented basketball players. 

Watford has been playing basketball since he was four or five years old, but he didn’t start taking it seriously until he was in sixth or seventh grade, when he realized he had a future in it. One of Watford’s biggest life goals is to take care of his parents with this career. 

“They’ve done so much for me,” Watford said. “And I want to be able to do this for them. I want to take care of them.”

His father, Ernest Watford, is a police officer who encouraged his boys to play basketball from a young age. According to Ernest Watford, he saw they were talented and knew it could be their chance to go to college. 

“I work for the sheriff's office,” Ernest Watford said in a 2019 interview. “I don’t have no big college fund. If we gonna do this, we gonna do it to our best ability.”

The Watford family places a high value on education. Basketball is important, but education is the bigger priority, according to their mother, Belinda Watford. 

“They knew what was expected of them,” Belinda Watford said. “Education comes first.” 

Trendon was on the A-B Honor Roll when he graduated Mountain Brook High School in 2019. He said he doesn't find it difficult to balance learning and playing, since his parents have always told him about the importance of education.  

“Some people find it hard,” Watford said. “But as long as you go to class, it’s not that bad. Practice is usually after class, and sometimes you have to stay up late doing homework, but it’s not that bad.”

The Watford family also puts a high emphasis on religion. Trendon's mother said that before every game, Trendon prays. According to Belinda Watford, faith is part of what has kept Trendon focused even with the high level of national attention he has received.

“We just thank God for it,” Belinda Watford said. “We know God has blessed them with this talent and thank God for it.” 

Load comments