Jalen Lovett: Basketball is an incredibly important part of life. It has given me many opportunities and taken me places I could never imagine. I honestly couldn’t see myself doing anything else.
Joe Gaiter: How was your red-shirt year at Academy of Art University?
Jalen Lovett: It was a year that was full of ups and downs. During my sophomore year at Lawson State I suffered a foot fracture and when I got to ART U, the fracture returned. There were several times I was close to hitting rock bottom mentally, but I was able to get through it by maintaining a positive attitude. Overall, though this year was a great learning experience.
Joe Gaiter: How was the adjustment from Lawson State Community College in Birmingham, Alabama to ART U in San Francisco, CA?
Jalen Lovett: The adjustment was pretty difficult. I went from a junior college that was classified as being an HBCU to a school that was full of individuals with diverse backgrounds including a lot of international students. The cultures are completely different as well from the food to pace of life. When I first got to San Francisco, I actually hated it, but I have grown to love the Bay Area. There is nothing like it.
Joe Gaiter: ART U was 12-18 last season. What went wrong in your opinion?
Jalen Lovett: We were not as focused as we should have been day in and day out. Early in the season we lost some games that we should have won which could have changed things entirely. But overall it was a great year as we tied the school record for wins in a season and made the conference tournament for the second time in the school’s history. Now we are looking to build on last season and win the PacWest Conference Championship.
Joe Gaiter: What is the game day atmosphere like at ART U?
Jalen Lovett: Game day at ART U is different for sure. There are not many fans at our games because it is an art school so the student body is not as interested in sports. But we are looking to change that in the coming years!
Joe Gaiter: What is your relationship like with Head Coach Scott Waterman and Assistant Coaches Clint Tremelling and D.J. Broome?
Jalen Lovett: My relationship with them is great. Coach Waterman is like a father figure to me. I know I can go to him with anything regardless of the situation and he will be there for me and help in any way he can. Coach Trem is like a crazy cousin in your family that you just want to hang out with every weekend. He knows his stuff and is a great person to be around. DJ is like the big brother I never had. I talk to him about any and everything. He tells me the truth whether I want to hear it or not. You left off our volunteer assistant Alex Lieu. Alex is a great dude and helped me get through some tough times just by talking with me, cracking jokes, and being available to work me out. He is one of the best trainers I have ever worked out with. Salute to him.
Joe Gaiter:Describe your style of play as a guard?
Jalen Lovett: I would consider my style of play as a scoring guard that can pass and rebound at a high clip.
Joe Gaiter:Did you face any adversity this year?
Jalen Lovett: I faced a lot of adversity this year. I struggled academically as I was challenged differently in the classroom. There were many other mental challenges that arose from my injury. I needed help and it took me a minute to ask for it because I was used to handling everything on my own. This year forced me to grow up and made me realize it is okay to ask for help if you need it. I think this year prepared me to be a pro from a mental aspect.
Joe Gaiter:Where are you training during the off-season?
Jalen Lovett: As of right now, I am in Atlanta working out, but as soon as COVID-19 blows over, I plan to go back to Birmingham and workout with the Lawson State assistant coach who I am close with.
Joe Gaiter:What is your motivation on the court?
Jalen Lovett: My motivation is to take care of my family and show people that no matter what, you can do it! I have been through a lot just to get to this point. But if I can do it, anybody can, and that does not just apply to basketball. It applies to whatever you want to do in life. Don’t let your past determine your future.
Joe Gaiter:Your mother played basketball at Alabama A&M. What has your mother taught you about the game?
Jalen Lovett: All the credit goes to her. She put the ball in my hands at a young age. That’s all she needed to do! THANK YOU!
Joe Gaiter:What is your untold story?
Jalen Lovett: I barely graduated high school and now I have an Associates’ Degree and am just a few classes away from a Bachelor’s Degree in Communications/Media Technologies.
Joe Gaiter:What is your major and how do you plan on using it?
Jalen Lovett: My major is Communications/Media Technologies. I really enjoy the field but I am thinking I want to get more involved in buying and investing in property when my basketball career ends.
Joe Gaiter: Who are some athletes we need to keep on our radar?
Jalen Lovett: Nichaune Jones and Charles Fairchild at Point U. I am expecting big things from them.
Joe Gaiter: What do you want your legacy to be?
Jalen Lovett: Like I said earlier, just showing people in general they can overcome anything and do anything that they want to regardless of where they started.
Joe Gaiter: Shoutouts?
Jalen Lovett: Jhilly, JB, Tae Hoops, Byrd, Trxgga (Go stream CTMD Vol. 1&2 on SoundCloud), BBQ Stef, Luka, DJ, Alex, TremMoney, Waterman, Marquis, Brad, YungBank, Kamiyah, Kayla, Cam, Squirt, Bryce, Pops, Mama, Grandma, 2 Sharp, Coach J, Coach Dee, Coach Nate, Coach Springer, All my coaches from Gresham Park Basketball (Coach Dwayne, Cotton, RJ) and Glenwood Football (Coach Steve)
Jalen Lovett, Art U, Interview with Joe Gaiter was last modified: May 29th, 2020 by Joseph Gaiter