When you've overcome obstacles like Tyson Jolly has the present is practically a present.
It was kind of rough,” Jolly said. “Just figuring things out. It was a learning experience. Now it's getting better. I've learned a lot. I've got stronger, faster, my shot has got better and I'm looking forward to next year.”
He began by bouncing around a bit.
His health sidelined him as a high school junior.
When doctors discovered seven blood clots on his lungs.
He changed his health habits, returned and college coaches came calling.
Tyson then signed with Cal, but after a coaching change he requested a release.
A year at a Florida prep school eventually brought him to Baylor, but now there's one more break.
Jolly wasn't exactly jumping for joy when he was told he'd spend his first season redshirting and gaining guidance.
“It was hard,” Jolly said. “I didn't really want to do it. I had no interest in doing it, but over a while I just started learning. Like as the game started coming I started learning more. Seeing more of what coach was talking about. And stuff started making sense to me that didn't make sense when I first got there. It was just a big learning process.”
While his fellow Bears begin postseason play Tyson knows his big break starts this summer.
“I'm looking forward to this offseason,” Jolly said. “I'm going to utilize it to the best of my ability, come back next season ready to eat. I'm trying to win the Big 12 next year, win this Big 12 championship and make a run at the national tournament next year. So this offseason is going to be real big.”
While Tyson Jolly's journey has seen its ups and downs, and taken him coast to coast.
He eventually made his way to Waco, and found a home at Baylor.
He told me his parents have since moved from Oklahoma City to Dallas, so they can see him play often.
He also said, he still reaches out to his roots, and hasn't forgot his foundation with Putnam City West High School.
“Man, that means everything to me,” Jolly said. “That's where I came up. That's where I grew up. That's where I started playing basketball. Without them, without my coach, I really think I wouldn't be playing basketball, so it means everything to me. I just want everybody to know they mean the world to me, and they're the reason why I keep going.”