Orange basketball recruit works hard to make the team
By Alex Kline SYRACUSE (NCC News) – A year can make a world of difference in the life of a teenager. Whether it be academically, socially or extracurricularly, something is bound to change for whatever reason. For Tyler Lydon, it was his future in the sports of basketball, which will help a good chunk of his life going forward.
Unknown by most people last year, Lydon was a 6-foot-9 basketball player from Pine Plains High School in Upstate New York. A junior at the time, he was very skilled but lacked the exposure to receive attention to play at the next level being in such a small town.
“There’s only one stoplight in the town of our school and our school is actually the biggest school district in New York State,” Lydon told NCC. “It’s all farmland so there’s maybe sixty, seventy kids in a grade now. It’s a different place. You’d expect to be going to a place that’s a lot bigger and especially when you play with a team like the one I was on we averaged a height an inch below the starting lineup of the (NBA’s Brooklyn) Nets. Everyone thought we were a school from a city, and then you go out there and there’s just woods everywhere and you’re outside and there’s just a lot of wildlife.”
Because it was so improbable to get the attention most felt he deserved, Lydon decided to make a major transition. He left Pine Plains for New Hampton School, a prep school about 250 miles away, and decided to take an extra year of high school. Currently a senior, he will take a postgrad year next year, but is considered a junior by some.
As National Signing Week in High School Basketball came and went, Lydon heard and witnessed many friends and teammates in the class he used to be sign with schools, while he waited for his moment which will come next year.
“Watching all these other kids sign and everything, it made me almost jealous in a way, but it also made me want to work even harder because that’s a very important day obviously and seeing everybody do it just makes me want to go out and work harder than I am,” Lydon said. “It’s something that I’m really looking forward to and I mean I wish I could have obviously signed but it’s good because I get an extra year just to work on my game so I’m definitely looking forward to it though.”
Regardless, Lydon’s move has paid dividends as he is now ranked in the top-100 nationally, according to ESPN, and received dozens of college scholarship offers from schools around the nation in Notre Dame, Vanderbilt, Florida, Virginia and others. Humbled by the opportunites ahead of him, the Pine Plains native realized he wanted to return home.
He ended up returning home after all by making his decision to play his college basketball an hour away for head coach Jim Boeheim at Syracuse University, Lydon’s dream school growing up.
To Lydon, it has been a tough experience four months in. It has taken him away from frienda and family, but he isn’t complaining. In fact, he likes it there and realizes that it is the best situation for him afterall.
Listen to the story here: Lydon’s New Life