|Huskies' Jon Brockman ready for finale at home|
|Written by Admin|
|Thursday, 05 March 2009 23:05|
As the end of his career at Washington quickly approaches, Brockman's post-game loitering is lasting longer, absorbing every moment of a senior season that has the No. 16 Huskies on the cusp of their first outright conference title in 56 years.
``I'm getting a lot of people who have been around here for four years that I've seen all the time, I see on a daily basis and pretty soon it's going to come to an end. I'm not going to see them anymore,'' Brockman said. ``It's nice being able to stop and talk with them and say, 'Thanks for being here, thanks for hanging out and being a part of this whole thing with me.'''
own since winning the Pacific Coast Conference in 1953. If the circumstances surrounding the game didn't provide enough emotion, then Brockman's farewell will only supercharge the environment.
He came to Washington as one of the most decorated recruits in the school's history. Brockman was the local kid who spurned every national power for the opportunity to play 30 miles from Snohomish, the small town of about 9,000 where he was raised.
Then he endeared himself even more by following former UW star Brandon Roy's path and sticking around for four years with a gritty, workmanlike style of doing all the dirty deeds recruits of his stature often balk at.
You think Duke - which nearly became Brockman's address - couldn't use his inside moves about now? Brockman is seventh in the country in rebounding at 11.3 per game and enters Saturday's finale with 58 career double-doubles.
``I've been in drills and I've run across him - I haven't told him this, but goodness gracious - I mean it's like somebody threw a refrigerator at you,'' Washington coach Lorenzo Romar said. ``And you're constantly getting pounded by him. He wears people down. I just think because he is not a big dunker and is not flashy and doesn't hit a lot of threes, people take him for granted.''
r years have shots or touches ever been mentioned in conversation. Brockman's greatest frustrations lie not with a scoring average that's gone down in his senior year - from 17.8 last year to 15.0 this season - but with his failure in getting Washington to the NCAA tournament each of the last two seasons.
There won't be any such absence this year with the Huskies already owning a share of the Pac-10 regular season title.
``When your best player is your hardest worker and practices every day as if he's trying to earn a scholarship and is your most selfless player - he is our most selfless player - then it's going to rub off,'' Romar said.
His nonstop motor - from games to practice - is noted in the number of facial injuries suffered by himself, teammates and opponents from Brockman's flailing elbows, whether its spinning for a basket or chasing down a loose ball.
``Learning from him is like learning from Michael Jordan or something because of his work ethic,'' teammate Quincy Pondexter said. ``It's amazing how far work ethic can take you.''
Then there's Brockman's fun-loving, slightly quirky personality. His dad, Gordy, notes that his son cannot stand still. Even during a free throw, Brockman has to be the one to retrieve the ball and then hand it to the referee.
the way he is. He's always moving.''
Brockman reached the maximum of 5,000 friends on his Facebook account, so he decided to start a Twitter page. Among his more recent Twitter posts, ``is anyone selling their rock band or guitar hero for PS3 ...? if so hook it up!!!'' and ``One of the best things about being a college athlete Training Table (all you can eat grub).''
``I don't put too much personal info on there,'' Brockman said. ``But I'm just loving these last few moments as a Husky. The last month or so it's really just started escalating and going by unbelievably fast.''
Now his final home game has arrived, capping a career that started with a run to the round of 16 in the NCAA tournament as a freshman and will end with a Pac-10 championship ring and another tourney appearance in a few weeks. His post-college prospects are muddled, being a 6-foot-7 power forward. But Brockman will worry about the next stage once his legacy at Washington is complete.
``It's going to be determined just how this team does,'' Brockman said. ``People remember the last thing you did. They don't really remember what you did the years before. The last thing you do is what people really remember.''