Fred Hoiberg said he is fortunate to have the life he has, but also said he got there by being ready to take advantage of opportunities.
The Iowa State men's basketball coach and former NBA player spoke to more than 700 area high school juniors during Marshalltown Community College's career expo Tuesday.
Hoiberg was drafted by the Indiana Pacers after his career at Iowa State, but "The Mayor" still needed to earn a roster spot. This is one time where he took advantage of an opportunity and parlayed it into a lengthy NBA career.
T-R PHOTO BY ANDREW POTTER
Iowa State men’s basketball coach Fred Hoiberg hands an autograph to Marshalltown High School junior Mike Sanchez near the end of his presentation to more than 700 area high school juniors at Marshalltown Community College’s career expo Tuesday. Sanchez asked for the autograph during a question and answer portion of the presentation.
"I went into that training camp in the best shape of my life," Hoiberg said.
Later in life, when ISU Athletic Director Jamie Pollard came to Hoiberg asking him about the coaching job, he was again ready to take advantage of an opportunity.
"This is my dream job," Hoiberg said. "All this is possible because I kept myself prepared."
Throughout his school days, Hoiberg loved playing sports, but academics were always a priority in his household.
"Make sure you put your main focus on academics, because that's what's going to carry you though life," Hoiberg said.
Hoiberg's life hit some rocky times when near the end of his NBA career he was diagnosed with a heart condition and now wears a pacemaker. He told the students they will all hit adversity in their lives and the key will be how they respond to it.
Hoiberg was asked about former MCC player, Will Clyburn, who will play for the Cyclones next season after transferring from Utah.
"Will has the chance to be a special player," Hoiberg said. "I think Will will have a great impact on our team next year."
After Hoiberg's speech, the high school students went to several sessions presented by area professionals to learn about different careers.
"It allows high school students to explore different career options prior to graduation," said Angie Redmond, associate dean of enrollment services at MCC.