DeMarre Carroll was welcomed to the Trojan Center with big cheers from all the junior Jazz players in the audience. Carroll was born July 27, 1986, is 6’8” and just finished his third year in the NBA and his first year with the Utah Jazz.
Carroll played in 24 games last season for the Jazz and started the last nine games of the regular season. He averaged five points and three rebounds per game. Carroll graduated from Missouri in 2008 with a bachelor’s degree in human and organizational development. While he was playing for Missouri, he earned the nickname “Junkyard Dog” because of his intense work ethic. He led John Carroll Catholic High School (Birmingham, Ala.) to two-straight state championships in 2003-2004. He became the first player in the history of the school to have his jersey (No. 32) retired during a ceremony in August 2009.
Carroll was all smiles as he watched the kids play a game of lightening. The kids were separated into age groups and took turns at the free throw line. If they missed their shot, they would catch the rebound and keep trying, but if the person in line behind them made their shot first they were out. When all the age groups finished, the winners got to play a game with DeMarre. Jarren Bennett was pleased, as his shot eliminated the Jazz player.
They spent the next 10 or so minutes betting on Carroll’s ability to make some pretty difficult shots. If he made a shot that the kids bet he would miss, they had to run a lap around the court. There was a quiz next with questions asked about DeMarre first and then some generic Utah Jazz questions. The kids who correctly answered the questions were rewarded with some one-on- one time with the Jazz player. They tried to get a shot in against Carroll first and then played defense after that. The kids really got a kick out of it if they actually got their shot in against a “real Jazz player.”
After all the activities were finished, the kids sat back down and got to ask DeMarre questions. “How many people are in your family?” was answered with five. He admitted to liking football and baseball when he was asked, “What other sports do you enjoy besides basketball?” The Jazz forward was very friendly and amusing in his answers to the kids and the audience was very pleased.