By Madisen Carter
Mitchell Smith has been playing basketball since he was in third grade. After trying out soccer, football and baseball, he realized that he preferred the faster pace of play basketball had compared to the other sports and soon decided just to focus on basketball along with track and field. Smith has years of basketball experience under his belt from playing through high school, to playing at Diablo Valley College, and most recently serving as a Team Manager for the University of California, Berkeley’s Men’s Basketball Team.
After graduating from Acalanes High School, Smith went on to play two years of college basketball at DVC. During his time at DVC, Smith started in every game he played in and finished his career with a total of 711 points, 136 assists and 100 rebounds. After his two seasons at DVC, Smith had to make a decision to either continue playing basketball or further his education. Smith ultimately chose to further his education at Cal while still keeping the game of basketball close.
Smith went on to earn his Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Economics and Policy while also taking on the role as a Team Manager for Cal’s Men’s Basketball Team. His role as a Team Manager included working closely with the team and staff on day-to-day operations, helping out during practices, travel plans for the team and more. He said during that time he was able to observe the Cal basketball's coaching staff to learn how they executed their day-to-day tasks to help prepare him for a future career in Player Development.
Outside of basketball, Smith is a full time Project Controls Analyst. He heard about UPBasketball through his friends who were already player development coaches at UPB, Joey Hewitt and Danny LaFortune. When they told him there were openings at the facility, he reached out to both Packie and Bianca Turner for an interview and made his way on the team.
Smith has been with UPB for a few weeks now and is helping with group training and private training. He said he has enjoyed seeing the variety of different athletes that come into the gym from division I college basketball players all the way down to three year olds. He said group training has been his favorite part so far, being able to interact with a lot of different athletes and help them improve throughout the sessions.
[I want athletes to leave with] happiness, joy and a feeling that they got better that day,” Smith said. “[I want them to feel better about] their skills, [about] working on their strengths, [and about] working on their weaknesses, you know, leaving the facility feeling that they got better that day while also having a good time.”
We are excited to have Mitchell with us on the team and we are looking forward to seeing the impact he makes on our athletes that come into the gym.