Did Stephen A. Smith perform basketball? Revisiting ESPN personalty’s superior school, college occupation

You can find no denying that Stephen A. Smith is a single of the most important names in sporting activities media. What is up for discussion, nevertheless, is Smith’s athletic prowess in advance of the complete-time changeover to masking the activity.

Smith’s athletic feats will surely occur again into the highlight when he prospects Group Stephen A. in opposition to Shannon Sharpe’s Workforce Shannon in the 2024 NBA All-Star Superstar Video game at Indianapolis’ Lucas Oil Stadium on Friday.

With a star-studded roster that functions C.J. Stroud, Metta Environment Peace and Jennifer Hudson, amongst other individuals, Smith will glance to use his coaching capabilities to strategize his way to victory. But what about his taking part in skills?

This is a seem back again at the enjoying career that preceded Smith’s increase in the media room.

Far more: Everything you have to have to know about All-Star 2024

Did Stephen A. Smith participate in basketball?

Stephen A. Smith played collegiately at Division II Winston-Salem Condition University, a historically Black college in Winston-Salem, N.C.

Notable Winston-Salem Condition alumni include things like Basketball Corridor of Famer Earl Monroe and Warriors guard Chris Paul, who not long ago graduated from his hometown’s HBCU following taking part in collegiately just 10 minutes absent at Wake Forest University.

Smith, a indigenous of New York Town, transferred to engage in at Winston-Salem Condition after spending a 12 months participating in on the junior faculty degree at New York’s Manner Institute of Technologies. At Winston-Salem Condition, Smith performed beneath Hall of Fame head mentor Clarence “Big Dwelling” Gaines. 

Through a 2023 podcast visual appeal, Smith alleged that his scholarship offer to Winston-Salem State arrived soon after he sank 17 consecutive 3-tips in entrance of Gaines throughout a campus go to.

Smith’s basketball occupation was lower shorter because of to personal injury, a circumstance he defined on Paul George’s “Podcast P with Paul George” demonstrate.

I was on a basketball scholarship at Winston-Salem Condition College. My 1st year there, I cracked my kneecap in 50 percent. I was under no circumstances in a position to perform again. I in fact had to depart faculty for a semester to go dwelling below my mother’s insurance plan to rehab because they would not pay for the insurance coverage in North Carolina. I would occur again, make the workforce, seeking to observe and after each and every 36 to 48 hours, my knee would just give out. I couldn’t operate with out the limp and which is what occurred.

As he in-depth what went completely wrong with his basketball vocation, Smith added that he feels no disgrace when people today endeavor to downplay his college or university accolades. Smith maintains that experienced it not been for his personal injury, he would have been a great deal a lot more impactful as a faculty player.

While his personal injury held him from becoming impactful on the flooring, Smith has remained concerned with his alma mater and HBCU athletics as a full. In 2017, he was inducted into the Hall of Fame of Winston-Salem State’s athletic conference, the CIAA.

Smith’s alma mater will take heart phase at the 2024 All-Star Weekend as Winston-Salem Condition will deal with conference foe Virginia Union in the 2024 NBA HBCU Basic at Indianapolis’ Gainbridge Fieldhouse.