Athlete of the Week: Merrill's David Jesperson - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Athlete of the Week: Merrill's David Jesperson


When you're six foot eight and a double-double machine on the hardwood, chances are you're not going to be able to avoid the spotlight.

But the spotlight has been a part of David Jesperson and his family's life long before this year's basketball season.

David Jesperson has definitely turned some heads throughout his basketball career at Merrill. Jesperson checks in at number 17 on the list of top 50 seniors in Wisconsin high school hoops. Following in the footsteps of his brother Paul, who starts for the University of Virginia, has made David the player he is today.

    "He was always a big leader to me, a big role model. Most of the teams paid a lot more attention to him so it got me a lot more open shots," recalls Jesperson. "He was okay with passing the ball to me so it was good."

Most would think that having to live in big brother's spotlight would be frustrating, but it doesn't seem to bother Jesperson too much.

"I'm kinda used to it," says Jesperson. "People usually ask me about my brother or if they hear my last name they usually ask me about him so it doesn't really bug me anymore."

The fact that David and Paul are different types of players helps keep Jesperson focused on improving his game

"I know we're not the same player. I'm just trying to stay level headed and be humble."

Coach Kurt Soderberg says it's Jesperson's humility that separates him from other star players.

"You know, he's humble," raves Soderberg. "To the point where many times I've had to tell David, 'stop passing the ball so much. That's a good look for you, you need to take that."

Jesperson says his passion for the game of basketball is second to none.

"If I could do it for the rest of my life, I would definitely do it. I just never get sick of it. It's always fun to me no matter what we're doing. I just love to play."



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