METAIRIE, La. – Just before Country Day senior basketball star Romin Williams signed the paperwork for his scholarship to attend Emory University, Country Day’s Head of School Carolyn Chandler cited his “hard work, strength of character and strong will” for presenting him with the opportunity to join a prestigious academic program.
Basketball coach Mike McGuire caught a glimpse of Williams’ determination early.
“I remember watching him shoot shots in the gym as a second grader,” McGuire said Wednesday just before the ceremonial signing.
“We’ve been through a lot together since then and today is a special day,” McGuire said.
Included in Williams’ truckload of basketball awards was being named the Most Outstanding Player among the 12 title-winning schools (all classifications) at this year’s Allstate Sugar Bowl/LHSAA Championships. He scored 2,300 points as a Cajun.
Williams, a wispy 5-foot-9 point guard, had an opportunity to attend a Division I basketball program and admitted selecting Emory University in Atlanta was “not an easy choice.
“I really wanted to play Division I basketball,” he explained. “But when I visited Emory I realized there were not many schools better than that.
“I had to make the best choice for my life after basketball.”
Although he first enrolled at Country Day as a second grader, it wasn’t until the beginning of his eighth grade year that Williams realized the educational opportunity his parents had provided him.
“When I started here I was very young,” Williams said. “When I got to the eighth grade I realized academics was a very big part in helping me to achieve what I wanted to do one day.”
Williams plans to study Business at Emory.
Williams was joined at the table by his father Jay, mother Monique and his younger sister Jeda, who his also a student and athlete at Country Day. The ceremony was held in the school auditorium, filled with his graduating classmates.
Two hours before the event, the electrical power in the area of the Old Metairie school failed. The school’s air conditioning went off on a typically warm April day.
“I assure you there is no cooler person in this auditorium today than Romin,” quipped Ms. Chandler.
Williams’ other accomplishments this year include:
– Louisiana Sports Writers Association, Class 2A all-state boys basketball team, Outstanding Player
– Division III Player of the Year
– Member of the 2016-2017 All-Metro Boys Basketball Team
– Division III state championship game, Most Outstanding Player
– Allstate Sugar Bowl/LHSAA boys basketball tournament, Most Outstanding Player
– Class 2A MVP
– All-Metro Player of the Year
– All-Tournament Team at the NIT and Roundball Classic Tournaments