Boys’ basketball participant of the yr: Jared McCain of Corona Centennial

Josh Giles has helmed the Centennial Huskies for twenty years. The boys’ basketball coach has by no means seen anybody go to the lengths Jared McCain needs to be nice.

A pair falls in the past, some Centennial gamers had been staying at Giles’ home earlier than an early-morning flight. Everyone was goofing round on his son’s Xbox, Giles remembered. But at exactly 10 p.m., McCain snuck right into a bed room to observe his nighttime routine: yoga. Creature of behavior.

“It doesn’t matter where he’s at, what he’s doing, what he needs to do to prepare to be the best that you can be, that comes first,” Giles mentioned. “Everything else comes second.”

It’s the facet most don’t see — even by means of amassing shut to 2 million followers on TikTok, even by means of NIL offers galore constructed off his sport and a smile born for Hollywood, McCain’s strategy to his craft has by no means modified. The Duke-bound McCain has been chosen The Times’ boys’ basketball participant of the yr after main the Huskies to a 3rd consecutive Southern Section Open Division championship.

He earned the award by averaging 18 factors, seven rebounds and 4 assists a sport, his Giles-lauded work ethic on full show in increasing an all-around sport and whereas guiding the Huskies to a three-peat.

His strategies, past his time within the fitness center, are unconventional for a excessive schooler. Before Centennial’s opening-round sport of Southern Section pool play, earlier than a 22-point efficiency to steer the Huskies over Chatsworth Sierra Canyon, McCain was doing tai chi.

Read also  NASCAR takeaways: Logano, Almirola seize Duels; Busch pissed off by crash

He’s an avid reader, Giles mentioned. If he stumbles upon a observe of Michael Jordan’s or Tom Brady’s and finds it fascinating, he’ll incorporate it into his routine. Unapologetically himself.

“The pressure is always going to be there,” McCain mentioned within the fall of his newfound fame. “You just have to minimize it as much as you can by trusting your work. I feel like the work I put in shows, and that’s what I really had to lock into my mind.”

It’s confirmed all through a blinding profession at Centennial.

McCain was recognized primarily as a shooter, Giles mentioned, when he first got here to Centennial as a spindly freshman. But he dominated his senior yr in each aspect of the sport — pushing the break off rebounds, controlling tempo within the pick-and-roll sport, drawing free throws to sluggish the tempo.

“He’s one of those guys you don’t ever bet against,” Giles mentioned.