ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - Three years ago, Alexandria's Kevin Norman was helping to lead Peabody High School to the 3A state championship. The senior finished that season with an average of 24 points and 13 rebounds per game.
Former Peabody Warhorse Kevin Norman launches a shot against the Marquette Golden Eagles Wednesday in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo credit: Mike Cianciolo)
After graduating high school, Norman chose to pursue his education and basketball career at Angelina College, a junior college in Lufkin, Texas.
Fast forward two years and today Norman is a member of the Jacksonville University Dolphins, a Division I program in the Atlantic Sun Conference.
Wednesday, Norman and his teammates had the chance to play in an NBA arena, Fiserv Forum, when they faced the Marquette Golden Eagles in a non-conference game. Jacksonville lost, 75-66, but for Norman, it was the opportunity to crack the starting lineup.
“It was crazy. Honestly," Norman told former KALB sports anchor Mike Cianciolo after the game. "Like the atmosphere was unbelievable. I wasn’t expecting the game to be like this.”
Norman finished the game with 4 points and 7 rebounds in 28 minutes and has averaged nearly 9 points per game so far. He admitted that the transition from junior college to Division I has been challenging.
“It’s slow for me right now, because in junior college I was able to like do whatever I wanted," Norman said. "But now I have to like play in the system and I’ve got to get used to it.”
Norman credits much of his success to his Peabody roots under Coach Charles Smith. He said the program taught him about energy and effort.
Like Peabody, Jacksonville's primary colors are green and white, so he has found the Dolphins' uniforms a natural fit.
Speaking of green and white, Norman does have a message for the current Peabody players who look to continue an amazing legacy.
"Win a championship!" Norman said. "We need another one! We need another one, and I feel like this is the year."