If you head to the official website for North Carolina A&T athletics and navigate over to the men's golf team, you'll see six players and a coach. Three of those players are seniors, with thumbnails of their pictures featured proudly on the page. And then you'll see a name that, upon reading it, might make you do a double take. But it's not that odd a name, so you'd probably skip right past it.
That name belongs to freshman golfer J.R. Smith, from Millstone Township, New Jersey, and Saint Benedict's Prep School. And yes, that is the J.R. Smith, the same J.R. Smith who had a very successful 16-year NBA career, appeared in a dunk contest, made 11 three-pointers in a game and all of that other good stuff.
And though his golf career will be fun to follow, his entire college experience as a mid-30s former NBA star should be just as entertaining. In fact, his social media posts in recent days have been refreshing to see, including this one in which his classmates didn't think the "J.R. Smith" who joined their virtual study group was the J.R. Smith.
Among the other fun tweets and interactions with fans/fellow students have to do with his journey to adapt in such a high-quality academic setting and him joining an intramural basketball team. Think that team might have an unfair advantage?
However, there have also been some more serious, heartfelt messages spread by Smith as he begins this new chapter of his life. When popular account House of Highlights shared a joke about Smith drinking while on campus, the former NBA star had a passionate and thoughtful response.
Here's to Smith for making such a cool move as he furthers himself. Here's to high grades and a high GPA. And here's to a low golf score.