Back when West Virginia forward Dimon Carrigan was playing at Cambridge Rindge & Latin High School, in Massachusetts, one name was watching him in spirit every time he played.
NBA Hall of Famer Patrick Ewing’s retired jersey was in the gym, as Carrigan was looking to take a step to the next level.
“I’m trying to be the next one up there,” Carrigan said.
Ewing attended Georgetown, winning a national championship with the Hoyas in 1984. The seven-footer went on to play for the New York Knicks for 15 seasons, bringing relevancy to the big apple. Ewing was most recently named to the NBA 75th Anniversary Team.
“You stand on the shoulders of giants when you’re in Massachusetts and going to Cambridge & Latin. We’ve got Rumeal Robinson, Louis Ford, [those] are a couple of dudes that went to the league but Pat is just the biggest name.”
As a center for the high school that Ewing played and had his number retired at, seems like it would be a lot of pressure, right?
“For me to be a center, yeah, I felt like it was a lot of pressure,” Carrigan said.
Carrigan has had a unique journey, going from D-III JUCO to West Virginia. The Massachusetts native talked about how the biggest difference from where he was at four years ago was the nutrition. Carrigan is happy he can eat right.
After playing two seasons at Florida International, Carrigan decided to enter the transfer portal. The 6-foot-9 forward agreed with new teammate Pauly Paulicap about how the transfer portal is a scary thing to join, due to the thousands of players that enter their names. Carrigan decided to make a highlight tape and it got into the hands of Bob Huggins and the coaching staff.
In his first two games for the Mountaineers, Carrigan has totaled six points, six rebounds and six blocks, in a combined 29 minutes of play. It seems like Carrigan will give West Virginia the inside defense that is much needed this season.
For Carrigan, this is an opportunity to make his high school alma mater proud, as his Division-I status can be looped with Ewing.
The times Carrigan has met Ewing, the NBA Hall of Famer was looking down at the now-Mountaineer.
“It was the first time I ever felt little,” Carrigan joked.
(Top Photo: Kelsie LeRose – WVSN)