DES MOINES, Iowa (WOOD) — Jon Teske sat near his locker before Michigan practiced for its second-round game against Florida Friday.
“Do you remember those guys?” He was asked.
Teske was looking at a picture of a Grand Rapids Storm AAU basketball team from 2008. It was a group a of fourth-graders. Towering in the center of the back row was him.
“Just looking back at all the memories you make,” said Teske.
He lived in the Grandville area for ten years, until he was 12. Teske moved to Ohio when his family had to relocate for his father’s job.
“All the traveling,” Teske remarked while staring at the photo.
That travel continued all the way to Des Moines. Teske is now one of the key contributors to the Wolverines, leading the team in rebounds while averaging almost 10 points a game.
His time in West Michigan served as part of his foundation for basketball success.
“I’ve been playing basketball for so long, I just feel like I have a pretty good IQ for the game,” said Teske. “Just being around basketball at a young age and just taking that experience.”
“He’s huge. When he plays well, we play well,” said senior guard Charles Mathews. “He’s the one that seals the deal down there for us.”
Not just down low. Believe it or not, the 7-foot junior center isn’t afraid to chuck it from deep. He’s connected on 24 three-pointers and is shooting over 30 percent from beyond the arc.
“He’s an emerging shooter,” said assistant coach Saddi Washington, with a touch of sarcasm. “He still has a way to go and he’s a threat around the basket finishing. Those are all things we work on with post players — being a threat at all three levels.”
“I’ve had a little trouble with those air balls, but I’m going to keep shooting them. That’s what J.P. (Jordan Poole) says: shooters shoot. I’m just going to go out there and play my game and I’m having fun with it, so it’s all good,” said Teske.