Most young athletes dream of playing professional sports, but don’t put a lot of thought into how they will get there. Sure, talent and academics are important, but they somehow believe that someone along the way will just plug in the missing pieces. For Eastern Arkansas basketball standout Daniel Bandy, his holes were plugged with misinformation. Nonetheless, a professional sports journey is not an easy feat, and Bandy’s commitment to succeed drove him to navigate a very unorthodox route to the next level. Read on to learn how Bandy uses the twists and turns of his career to minister to other young athletes!
The Next Quarter
Our NEXT Quarter initiative was created to highlight the successful post-career transitions of former NFL, NBA, WNBA, and International athletes. We aim to change the negative stereotypes of professional athletes and decrease the number of athletes that experience hardship in retirement. Our ultimate goal is to positively impact the next generation of athletes, by encouraging them to take full advantage of the opportunities provided by their sport to succeed in life.
We will publish a new NEXT Quarter interview bi-weekly. Please connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for more information about our initiative. Help us change the conversation from ‘failures’ to ‘successes,’ so we can change the game!
Professional athletes play the game for one purpose – TO WIN. And Murray State alum’s Marcus Brown has done that many, many times over his 15-year sports career. The Euro-League basketball legend has achieved a level of success that most young athletes dream of, being touted as one of the top U.S. players to EVER play abroad. He has earned multiple championships, MVP accolades, All-Star nominations, and Hall of Fame inductions. The relentless pursuit of greatness displayed by the 1996 2nd round NBA Draft pick is a trait he hopes to pass on to future basketball players. Brown shares wisdom and advice with our readers to help the next generation of hoopsters succeed and “pay it forward.”
There are many roads that can lead to an NFL contract. Collegiate athletes can be drafted by NFL teams, or they can travel the more uncertain road of an undrafted free agent. For former Henderson State standout Antonio Leak, the adrenaline rush of signing his NFL contract with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as an undrafted free agent was all the same. Although he experienced many of the issues that most NFL players fear every day of their careers, such as injuries and waivers, Leak conquered them to succeed in the game that matters most – LIFE. Keep reading to learn how his professional team helped him navigate the obstacles he faced and transition smoothly into the NEXT Quarter of his career!
Only a handful of athletes in NCAA history have recorded over 2,000 points, 1,000 rebounds, 300 assists, and 300 steals in their collegiate career…and The University of Mississippi (Ole Miss) alum Armintie Price Herrington is one of them. Many players that achieve that level of success don’t think much about planning for their future, but Herrington was inspired by her collegiate and WNBA experience to make a difference. Her faith, work ethic, and eagerness to learn have allowed her to transition into the NEXT Quarter of her career, while helping the next generation of athletes prepare for success. Read more to learn how this high-flying heroine is touching lives now to change the game later!
There are two things that Mississippi State alum Darryl “Super D” Wilson is known for: having laser-like focus and having laser-like accuracy from the 3-point line. After leading the Bulldogs to its lone NCAA Final Four appearance, Wilson embarked on a professional career in Europe that spanned a decade. He channeled his passion for the game of basketball into a passion for teaching others. His no-nonsense expectations of the players he coaches drive them to excellence, because he knows how important discipline and work ethic are to success. He shares all his life lessons with enthusiasm, humor, and truth. Read more about Wilson’s journey and his advice for young athletes seeking to live their dreams through sports.
Meet the NEXT Quarter editor
LaToya is the PR mastermind behind our NEXT Quarter success stories. She earned her degree in Journalism from the University of Memphis and has served as a publicist to several professional athletes, actors/actresses, musicians, and business owners. Contact her at LaToya@theathletesnexus.com for all media and press inquiries.