Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Five Minutes With ... Mike Garabedian

Denison Men's Basketball Player Mike Garabedian
Name: Mike Garabedian

Hometown/High School: La Grange, IL/Nazareth Academy

Institution: Denison University

Major: Communicationd

Sport: Men’s Basketball

I am originally from ... La Grange, Illinois

Why did you choose to attend a NCAA Division III institution? Basketball was definitely one of the reasons that I came to Denison, but I also liked the “family-like” atmosphere that it presented.  It reminded me a lot of the high school I went to because it’s relatively small and you get to know pretty much everyone.

How would you describe the philosophy of NCAA Div. III? That’s kind of a tough question to answer. But from an athlete’s perspective, the D-III level contains some of the most hard-working and dedicated student-athletes that I’ve ever been around.  It isn’t about the money or publicity to us; it’s about the love of the game and being a part of a team.

How has your experience been in balancing athletics and academics at Denison? Believe it or not, I actually think playing basketball in college has helped me academically.  I always seem to do better in school while we are in-season because it forces me to make sure I get everything done ahead of time in case we have a long road trip or game the next day.  When we aren’t in-season it’s really easy to procrastinate.

How would you best describe your normal day as a student-athlete at the NCAA Div. III level? I.e. What do you do all day? It’s a little different for me because I twist my ankles all the time so after classes I go down to the training room for treatment before practices and work-outs.  Other than that I think it’s pretty much the same compared to what other student-athletes do.  Go to class, eat as much as possible during the day to keep you going and get all your homework done at night after work-outs.

Favorite thing about Denison? My teammates.

Favorite thing about the NCAC? Tremendous competition.  Anyone can beat anyone any night and that’s what makes it fun.

What do you want to be when you grow up? I want to get involved in Sports Media Relations or a related field but I’m mostly just concerned about getting a job when I get out of college.

If you could trade places with someone for a day, who would it be and why? Derrick Rose.  I love that guy.

If you are stranded on an island, you would like to be with …… Carrie Underwood

What has been your most memorable moment in athletics during your collegiate career? Beating Wabash last year at our place.  They were 15th in the nation at the time and Jim Leffew drained a 35-footer off the glass at the buzzer to beat them by three.  That was such a good team that Wabash had last year so it meant a lot to us to beat them and I felt really good for Jim when he hit the shot because he’s been through so much in his career.  Plus, he saved me after I committed a stupid foul at the end of the game so it was a combination between jubilation and relief for me that night.

What’s currently playing on your I-Pod? Bruce Springsteen

What would be your advice for someone that is considering enrolling as a student-athlete at a NCAA Div. III institution? First of all, don’t hesitate to do it.  Playing basketball in college was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.  It really bugs me when people come up to me and ask “What’s the point of playing D-III? No one cares about it because it’s not D-1.”  I’m not kidding – people have asked me that before.  Make the decision to play, stick to it and then take in every moment.  There aren’t that many people out there that can say they played a sport in college and the relationships that you develop with your teammates and coaches over the four years are priceless.

If you could excel at any competitive sport (other than your own) which would you choose? Baseball

Which historical sporting event would you have liked to witness? When the Cubs won the 1908 World Series.  Every year they make me believe less and less that they’ll win one in my lifetime.

What’s your favorite sports team/Who’s your favorite athlete? Chicago Cubs, Chicago Bears, Chicago Bulls.  And I’m really annoying about it too.  Favorite athletes are Derrick Rose and Ryne Sandberg.

Any Pet Peeves? It really bothers me when broadcasters say “lacksadaisical” instead of “lackadaisical.”  I’m looking at you, Billy Packer.

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