Witnessing an amazing night of historic basketball and briefly meeting the President of the United States… oh what a night!
“It was a perfect night,” Ryan Mitchell ‘3L said, who was one of TJSL’s students working at The Carrier Classic on November 11. “I love college basketball and being at this game with two respected coaches and two respected teams wasn’t work – it was fun! And I got to shake the president’s hand!”
Mitchell and fellow TJSL student Justin Heim ‘3L watched the game between North Carolina and Michigan State while working it! They were ball-boys and set up nets to help get the court ready for tip-off.
“It was an amazing once in a lifetime experience,” said Heim. “While everyone keeps asking about how cool it was to be next to the president, or meet all the celebrities at the event, in truth the best part was all the friendships I had the opportunity to make throughout the day.”
The Carrier Classic was the first college basketball game ever played on the deck of a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier – the U.S.S. Carl Vinson - based at North Island. The game was played on Veteran’s Day to honor America’s military, past and present.
“It was good to have the troops being honored and to witness history,” Mitchell said. It was a great way to bring people together and to show we appreciate their efforts and to support them.”
“What could have been a long, grueling 14 hour day,” Heim said, turned out to be one of the best experiences I have ever had the opportunity to be a part of, and something I won’t soon forget.”
The ball-boy gig came about because Mitchell works for both the Chargers and the Colorado Rockies.
UNC took home the 85-pound Carrier Classic trophy, beating MSU by 12 points (67-55).