In the Dawg house

By Lawrence Bailey

The Red Gym was abuzz recently following a thunderous, rim-bending dunk. Unfortunately Toronto Raptors forward Jerome "Junk Yard Dog" Williams won’t be donning a Dinos’ jersey this year, but his half-hour cameo at tryouts was nonetheless appreciated.

Currently making the rounds of his newly adopted country to dole out pointers and introduce the world to his new line of basketball-related apparel, JYD addressed about two dozen members of the Dinos’ mens basketball squad. The Tues., Sept. 4, appearance was a pleasant surprise to all, a well-kept secret that began spreading across campus like wildfire by mid-afternoon.

What did "Da Dog" have to say?

Following the usual stay in school spiel (he has a BA in Sociology from Georgetown University), he delved into his own personal playing philosophy.

"There are a lot of guys with the talent that don’t make it because they just don’t have the work ethic; they aren’t willing to do what it takes," Williams explained. "Hard workers get rewarded."

With Head Coach Dan Vanhooren smiling and nodding in agreement in the background, JYD said you’ve got to do what the team needs you to do, what the coach asks you to do.

"Of course you want to start, everybody wants to start," he slyly remarked. "But I make a lot more money than a lot of the starters [in the National Basketball Association]."

The Georgetown grad has had nothing but good things to say about Canada and the fans in Toronto since coming to the Raptors last season in a deal with the Detroit Pistons. And he proved he puts his money where his mouth is this past off-season, signing a long-term deal with the team. Since then he has been working diligently for various off-court charities including Positive Shades of Black–a Detroit-area charity he founded with his brother Johnnie– and promoting JYD apparel.

He addressed the clothing issue at the end of his five-minute debriefing of the squad. "Don’t worry, all the clothes will be made in Canada."


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