“I’ve always felt like, no matter how old I am, no matter what team I’m on, I can always lead in some way,” he said, “no matter what it is. It’s not just up to the seniors that have to get the guys together. I took it upon myself to text everybody. I said, ‘I know that we are all down about the loss, but I’m really proud of you guys.’”
One person who didn’t downplay the fact that a freshman stepped up to lead the team in a tough spot was head coach Randy Rahe. He said he was impressed with Gittens’ courage to step forward.
“I thought that was very impressive coming from a freshman,” Rahe said, “especially coming from a guy that didn’t perform particularly well. The last thing on his mind was how he played. He was more concerned about the team. That’s where his focus is.”
It is amazing how little things are so quickly forgotten in the world of sports. Coaches have to call timeouts to remind their players to box out or to not jump off sides. This is something a leader does. The players do the same thing. They are the voice that can calm in the storm. Just hearing a reassurance from someone you trust can make all the difference for one’s confidence and nerves.