From Timberwolf To Bobcat

Senior Receives D1 Basketball Scholarship To Texas State

Holding+up+the+Texas+State+University+logo%2C+Senior+Nicole+Leff+accepts+her+scholarship+to+play+basketball+at+the+Univeristy.+%22Don%27t+compare+yourself+to+others%2C%22+Leff+said.+%22If+you+focus+on+yourself+you%27ll+be+rewarded+for+the+work+you+put+in+because+at+the+end+of+the+day+your+rankings+or+write+ups+or+anything+doesn%27t+matter+if+you+can%27t+show+up+on+the+court.%22++

Photo Courtesy of Nicole Leff

Holding up the Texas State University logo, Senior Nicole Leff accepts her scholarship to play basketball at the Univeristy. "Don't compare yourself to others," Leff said. "If you focus on yourself you'll be rewarded for the work you put in because at the end of the day your rankings or write ups or anything doesn't matter if you can't show up on the court."

Lacie Perry, Reporter

In the midst of a chaotic senior year, one person in particular has been given an opportunity of a lifetime to attend a state university on a full ride scholarship to pursue her passion for basketball. 

Playing basketball since she was in fifth  grade, senior Nicole Leff has chosen to carry on her love for the sport by attending Texas State University, and committing to play for their Bobcat basketball team after being offered a full scholarship by her position coach, Coach Nathan Teymer.

“I was in shock but extremely thankful,” Leff said. “I saw all the dedication I have put in [in] the past years come to life. When I first started playing basketball, I never imagined playing collegiately, but as I began to grow as a player, Texas State was definitely one of my top choices.”

Working towards a scholarship is no easy feat, and Leff said she had to give up so much to keep playing basketball, and that she rarely got to live a normal high school life while doing so. 

“I gave up a lot of things to keep playing basketball,” Leff said. “I didn’t always get to be a normal high school student, I had to prioritize basketball over so many things. I’ve been around sports my entire life so even though I gave up a lot, I can’t imagine not pursuing a career where sports aren’t involved.” 

Leff has been a member of the girls varsity team all four years of her high school experience. Being a member of a team who made school history in playoffs with records of 33-4 in the 2019-2020 school year, Leff said that even though she has known most of the team her whole life, when they get new members there are rarely any noticeable changes. 

“Every year is new in its own way,” Leff said. “We practice so much together as a team there is not a different feeling when new people are added to varsity because they know the expectations coach Ott has of us, and if they are on varsity then they have met that expectation.” 

The moment Leff received her scholarship, she was undecided on whether or not she would accept, but with all of her hard work and dreams, she eventually accepted. 

“I got my scholarship at a home visit which was extremely exciting,” Leff said. “I didn’t accept it right away, but Texas State was a school I always dreamed of attending and playing the sport I love. I chose Texas State mainly because of the coaches and team. There is a true family-like atmosphere with the team. Also, the gorgeous campus is a huge plus.” 

Even if she decides not to keep playing basketball as a career, Leff said she would continue to pursue a job in the sports industry. 

“I think it would be cool to become a sports agent,” Leff said. “Sports are constantly around you and business interests me a lot so it is the perfect combination [for me.]”

Leff said she has gained many things out of her time playing basketball as well, such as a sense of family, competition and accomplishment. 

“My teammates are a huge inspiration to me because I have grown up with a lot of them,” Leff said. “To know they always support me and are there to help is the most motivating thing to me. While playing with them the competition aspect is insane, when you play you become a dog in the court, the effort you give is what you recieve.”