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Commitment and Sacrifice: GW Men’s Basketball Workout on the National Mall

Commitment and Sacrifice: GW Men’s Basketball Workout on the National Mall


>>Summer in Washington, a time to prepare. For George Washington basketball,
the season begins here, with workouts in the most iconic of settings. But first they visit the wall. Almost 60,000 Americans died in the Vietnam War. Here at their memorial is
where the Colonials start anew. They train. They remember. Each memorizes a name, a name that goes
up on another wall at the Smith Center.>>It kind of was very organic to start. It started with a small group. I was looking for an outside-the-box way
to gain some perspective with our guys. So we did the GW Veterans M4. It was a military veteran march. And I saw their eyes light up when
they were around the veterans. And I knew I had something
there when I saw their reaction. I think it’s more than just
sets and reps and exercises in terms of what I can provide the guys. You know, a lot of what I try to do is mindset. And every day these guys are here. It’s a phenomenal university. They’re in their dream set. And so the one thing I wanted our guys to
really gain appreciation of is remembering those who dreamed
so we can see clearer. There’s 58,000 plus names on the wall. And each one of those individuals had dreams
in life, and they weren’t able to achieve them. So, hopefully, our guys can, you
know, gain some perspective from that.>>We know every Tuesday,
Thursday what we’re getting into. Sometimes, we may be drained a
little bit, but we know why we’re doing it. We take the names down every time
we go down to the wall for a reason. Acknowledging what they’ve done when
all we have to do is do it for basketball. So, really when you put it like
that, we kind of all took a step back and kind of just realized, what they went through. And knowing that,
this should be easy for us.>>There’s been a lot of student
athlete reactions from the guys. The one that really stands out to me
was in Summer 1 when Patricio Garino, we print out all the names of the
lost on the weight room wall. And he looked at it, and he kind of
pondered and said, this guy was 22-years-old. And I didn’t really have to say anything. [ Music ]>>I’ve known Coach Johnson
for about six years now. And I know he gets a lot of crazy ideas. But there’s always a purpose behind it. And his two words this summer
were commitment and sacrifice. And that is the ultimate
commitment and sacrifice you can do, give your life for your country. Just, to see how many people gave
their lives for our freedom. The United States protect my country, Denmark, so I feel like
what they died for was something so I could live and pursue my dreams. So I took that away from it.>>Coach is the title for me,
but mentor is responsibility. So, however, long they’re living and
breathing, I just want them to remember this and work hard to achieve their dreams. Whether that be continuing to
play basketball for another ten years after they leave GW. Or if they’re a doctor or lawyer
or a businessman or even a husband. So just cherish the moment. Seize the day. Get the most out of what life has to offer you. [ Music ]

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