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The Jeremy Lin Guide To Success

The whole world seems to be talking about Jeremy Lin every single chance they get. Nevermind that the Oklahoma City Thunder’s Kevin Durant scored a career-high 51 points, his teammate Russell Westbrook added 40, and their power forward Serge Ibaka recorded the first triple double in team history in a win; the main news on ESPN that same night was all about Jeremy Lin leading his Knicks to a victory over the defending champion Dallas Mavericks.

Even though this much coverage may seem unfair from the outset, Lin has earned every second of his fame thus far. As an undrafted player from Harvard (of all places), Lin bounced around the NBA and even the D-League before landing with the Knicks, who actually contemplated cutting him. After a recommendation from teammate Carmelo Anthony to start Lin, Coach Mike D’Antoni has watched the young phenom carry the injury-laden Knicks to an 8-1 record and has become a double-double machine.

And I don’t see Lin’s success stopping any time soon.

But Jeremy Lin hasn’t been the only athlete in recent memory to appear out of the blue and take their league by storm. He’s not even the only athlete in his CITY to do so.

Victor Cruz, a wide reciever for the world champion New York Giants, was an undrafted player coming out of UMass in 2010. After making the practice squad with the Giants and getting an invite to the preseason, Cruz put his name on the map in a Monday Night Preseason Game by snagging 6 catches for 145 yards and 3 touchdowns. Cruz didn’t see much action in 2010 after that, but injuries to other recievers gave Cruz a shot to shine in 2011. And shine he did: Cruz set a Giant’s single season record in recieving yards with 1536, caught 9 TDs, made the Pro Bowl, and of course played a huge role in the Giants winning their 2nd Super Bowl in 7 years.

Other recent “nothing to something” stars include the likes of Antonio Gates, Kurt Warner, Arian Foster, JJ Baraea, and Ben Wallace. Many of these players either went undrafted or rode the bench for years before finally capitalizing on their one shot in the pros.

But something about Lin is just so strikingly different to me. Maybe it’s because he’s one of (if not the only) Asian American to contribute to the basketball world since Yao Ming. Maybe it’s because he graduated from Harvard, which is far from synonymous with “pro athlete.” Maybe it’s just because this is such a feel good story and no one I speak with has anything bad to say about him.

Lin’s story is so non-polarizing, it’s refreshing. Everyone is watching this unknown talent emerge right before our eyes, and he is showing no signs of slowing down.

But don’t get fooled into thinking this won’t happen again in the future. It’s happened before, and it’s happening now.

So keep your eyes peeled for the next Jeremy Lin, because it’s bound to happen.

Photo by Stephen Curry/Wikimedia

  • written by jflaherty on February 22nd, 2012
  • posted in Edit
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The Hub Bub is a collection of articles, videos, audio, photo slideshows, interactive maps and other media produced by students enrolled in journalism courses at Loyola University Chicago's School of Communication. For more about the School of Communication, our award winning faculty, and our state of the art facilities located in the heart of Chicago, visit our website.