Jalen Mills and Marcus Smart have more in common than their streaks of green hair. The two athletes went to middle school together.
Mills met with the media Thursday for the first time this offseason — with a full head of green dreds — and was asked about Smart copying his signature look. The Patriots cornerback took that as an opportunity to talk about his childhood relationship with Smart.
“You know what’s crazy? I actually went to school with Marcus Smart in Dallas in like fifth and sixth grade,” Mills said. “Everybody knew back then that he was going to be a pro in basketball because he was dunking back then. He ended up transferring. So we’re actually both from the same part of town back at home.”
Mills attended two different high schools in Dallas County before playing his college ball at LSU. Smart, meanwhile, went to high school outside of Dallas and became a star at Oklahoma State. The Celtics selected him at No. 6 overall in the 2014 NBA Draft.
The Eagles took Mills in the seventh round of the 2016 NFL Draft. The Patriots signed him as a free agent last offseason.
Though Mills hasn’t been in New England for very long, he says he’s pulling for the Celtics in their series against the Bucks.
“I’ve got to go with the home team right now,” he said. “I know they’re playing good team ball. Everyone’s doing their job.”
He’s bleeding green from head to toe. Gotta love it.