Tashaan amazed all of us when he completed 20 units during the Spring Semester last year -- while practicing, playing, and
traveling to post-season tournaments. My typical advice to a basketball player is to load up in the Fall semester and keep the Spring semester light since there is so much
traveling to do, but Tashaan never did anything the "expected" way. 20 units is a load that most students could not handle, but T taught me how you have to "work smarter, not harder, Sherm", and he did a great job. While many student-athletes struggle to graduate on time or even at all, Tashaan leaves Cal above pace for units. He's a determined and focused student. T and I would always have these battles about who was right about some fact or piece of information, and one time we were working on one of his papers, and I challenged him on a word he was using. He denied using the word, but I still had his original draft, so I got to prove myself right. It was one of the rare times I challenged him successfully, and I made a big deal out it --- telling him I wanted him to sign the paper and told him to write "Sherm was right" and date it. I did my little touchdown dance and told him how I was going to put the paper up on my office wall. He kept quiet, and about four minutes later, I challenged him on something else, and of course, he was right and I was wrong. "Where's that piece of paper? I'm going to make you sign it now. Looks like you weren't king for too long, huh?"
And I'll always be proud of the work Ryan did to play and graduate. He was a favorite of several Social Welfare profs, who, when they recognize the classic Forehan-Kelly face, always ask Tashaan about how his big brother is doing. Today, when I orient new student-athletes, I use Ryan as my role model of how you can play hard and still be able to do to academic work necessary to graduate. I know how Ryan would get back from a long weekend trip, and while others on the team would just crash out of exhaustion, he would stay up all night writing the paper he had due the next day. Never one to brag, Ryan would be quiet and attentive during study sessions for an exam, and then he'd get the highest score the next day. Seeing Ry in a cap and gown, walking across Zellerbach's stage, was a great sight to see. I fully understood the post by Cal6371 who talked about how Ryan made the young boy beam. Ryan was a constant volunteer at a local homeless dinner for families, and while the parents would take a break and eat, Ryan would take care of the kids. They loved him -- he is so good with kids.
Two fine young men. Great Golden Bears.
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