By Krista Pirtle
“Why me” is a phrase not found in the vocabulary of freshman Quincy Miller. During his high school career he had three close family members pass away. His senior season was lost due to an ACL tear in early December. Though these storm clouds loomed about him, Miller found the perspective needed to rise above.
“Honestly, this whole situation with my ACL has made me reflect on how blessed I am,” Miller said his senior season. “I’m only sitting out for a while, but at least I’m here. I think I had lost my priorities and God was trying to get my attention. I’m so thankful for that. I know how blessed I am.”
To some, blessed is an understatement.
To Miller, blessed is something that words cannot describe, leading him to be the person he is today.
Eye contact and a positive comment accompany a very firm handshake to show respect to whom he is meeting.
Although with his personality, it seems as if Miller never meets a stranger.
Because it seems that he is never in a bad mood, Miller said he receives joy from the one that redeemed him and delivered him in time of need.
Miller said God’s right hand lifted him from his injury and carried him to Baylor University.
“First of all, God brought me here,” Miller said. “I knew this was a big Christian school and I definitely wanted to be a part of a religious place.”
With all this emphasis on God, it seems to be easy to keep Him off the hardwood, focusing more on your own abilities than relying on His strength.
“He is everything,” Miller said. “He gives me the strength, he gives me the power to be who I am and to do what I do. He is number one in my life.”
Miller has what it takes to go pro after his college career, but the NBA is not enough for him.
He is pre-med with the goal of becoming an anesthesiologist.
“My mom kind of works in the medical field,” Miller said. “I thought it would be fun to make people happy before they go into surgery. I definitely want to help people.”
Pre-med is known to be very difficult here at Baylor.
Imagine that major paired with a Division I athletic career.
“When I left, I asked him where he was going and he said to the practice gym to work on his game,” senior Quincy Acy said. “That says a lot about the young fellow. You can’t coach that. That says a lot about how much he loves the team.”
By the game Miller has, one would think it safe to assume that he grew up with a love for the game.
Miller did not even like the game until the seventh grade after watching an AND1 game.
“I saw the moves and thought, ‘That’s tight,’” Miller said. “I started trying to do those moves and liked the game more and more.”
Since then, failure has been a key motivation on the hardwood.
“I want to get past it,” Miller said. “I want to be better than good. This season I have worked on my defense. I know if I help the team on defense that helps the team more than anything.”
His defense has improved as the season progressed while his shot is looking better and better.
While he was out with his knee injury last year, Miller worked on his shot, releasing his ball higher, rather than at his chest.
“I know with Quincy, you look at him and see him projected and people talk about him, and we expect so much out of him because we know he has that in him,” head coach Scott Drew said. “But at the same time, he didn’t play high school basketball because of his ACL injury last year. It is tough enough adjusting from high school to college, let alone if you don’t play your senior year and did rehab all year. It is going to take him a little bit of time and he will get better and better as the year goes on, but I love his work ethic and his desire to improve.”
Not only is he improving, he has also stepped up to a leader position his first season with the Bears.
When you watch Baylor play, keep your ears open for a voice, mostly on defense, keeping the energy up.
“I don’t think I shy away from a leadership role,” Miller said. “Anything I can do to help my team win.”
With only one loss thus far, Miller has greatly influenced his teammates.
“I would say I am a God-loving young man who is very into his family, very into his schooling, that loves basketball,” Miller said.
As merely a freshman, there is still much room for him to flourish in the green and gold under Scott Drew.
During his time here, don’t expect Miller to slow down. At all.
For him, it’s easy.