Antwoine Anderson’s Path to Success Begins in the Classroom


Anderson not only leads Fordham on the court, but also in the classroom. (JILLIAN JAYMES/THE OBSERVER)


The clock was ticking and the Rams were running out of time to score. The buzzer rang, signaling that the game against Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) was headed into overtime. Luckily, Antwoine Anderson, Fordham College at Rose Hill (FCRH) ’18, scored a buzzer-beater, allowing the Rams to win with a final score of 69–67. Anderson is a redshirt junior from Rochester, New York who scored two buzzer beaters in two different games, which led the Rams to victory. When scoring the shot Anderson said he was “really excited because we weren’t playing that well, but then ended up beating the best team in the conference.” On ESPN, Fordham is ranked 10th in the Atlantic 10 division, while the team they beat, VCU, is ranked first.

Anderson has been playing basketball since he was six and said he grew up playing in the recreational center in his neighborhood, the Boys and Girls Club. He reminisced that “[his] mother would hand him a football, soccer ball and basketball, and [he] would always grab the basketball first.” During his time playing basketball he at one point broke his jaw and also had to have two bunion surgeries, which prevented him from playing for eight months. He thought he would not be the same player after these setbacks.

Luckily, during the recruiting process, he received offers from multiple colleges, including Boston University and Quinnipiac University. He was torn between Canisius College in Buffalo and Fordham, but ended up choosing Fordham because “[he] is from upstate New York and didn’t want to be too far from home.” Anderson decided to continue playing in college because he said he thought he had something to prove.

“I grew up with adults all around me always saying I couldn’t do it or that I wouldn’t be in a Division 1 school and I wanted to prove them wrong,” Anderson said.

Attending Fordham has helped Anderson improve as a player. He said that he is now “more in control of the [game tempo].” The experience is helping him be a better player every day. Anderson credits his coaches for shaping his growth process of becoming a better player. He says they taught him many different skills that have enhanced his ability to perform as a point guard. Anderson’s many years of training have taught him the fundamentals and strategy involved in the game of basketball.

During games, Anderson “wants to take over the game by helping his teammates create open shots or to even create opportunities of his own.” This especially applies to games that go into overtime, because to Anderson the plays become “mind over matter.” On the court, Anderson said that he loves the support Fordham gets from alumni and the group of guys he plays with because it is a family environment.

When it comes down to the National Basketball Association (NBA), Anderson hopes to become a player for the New York Knicks. He wants to play for them because playing for a New York team makes him feel like he is at home. If he can’t play in the NBA, Anderson hopes to use the skills he’s learned as a communications major to enter the field as a sports analyst or to even work on the business aspect of basketball.

As for inspirations, Anderson’s biggest role model is Allen Iverson, who was a part of the NBA for 14 seasons on several different teams. He explained that Iverson “was a small guy who achieved more than anyone thought he would in the NBA.”

“He [played] with confidence, which is similar to how I play.” Anderson added.

Anderson hopes to be an inspiration to kids someday. He said his advice to children who want to pursue basketball is that “[the] biggest thing is to stick with it, despite whatever is going on.” He believes that it is not an easy route, and that you’re going to fall a bunch of times but you have to keep getting back up. For Anderson, rule number one is to maintain focus in the classroom. He thinks that regardless of where you want to go in life, it has to start in the classroom.