Coby White’s father lives on through him in everything he does.
Losing a parent at any age is devastating, but NBA Draft prospect Coby White is keeping his father’s memory alive whether it’s on the court or how he lives his life.
“He showed me how to be a man and that I have to work for everything I get in life because nothing is given to you,” White told FanSided’s Mark Carman. “He showed me what hard work and dedication looks like and I just try to follow him everyday and live through him. He raised a very good young man, I don’t anyone could’ve done a better than what he did.”
White’s father passed away in 2017 from cancer when he was a junior in high school, and while it has not gotten any easier going through life without him, White has used his platform to dedicate his life to his dad.
A quick glance at White’s Twitter page and you’ll notice that every tweet ends with the hashtag “FMF.” It’s just one example of how White plans to honor his father everyday.
“Once he passed I came up with the help of my family a hashtag to remember him by and it stands for “For My Father,” White said. “The main reason behind is that everything I do here on out in life, whether it’s in basketball or just in life everything is for him. Playing basketball is for him or anything else is for him.”
On Thursday night, when White’s name will likely be called within the first 15 picks, he’ll be sporting a suit by JCPenney that will honor his father as well. The liner of his jacket will feature a cancer ribbon to support cancer research, but also a nod to not only his dad who passed away from cancer but his uncle and two aunts who died from the same disease.
Although his dad’s death has been difficult to cope with, especially at such a young and formative age, he found solace in the UNC basketball family when he joined coach Roy Williams’ team for his freshman season.
“Him and I have a different relationship just because of what I went through in high school,” White said. “He was always there for me and when I got there he made sure that I was okay. He was always by my side and I can’t thank him enough for that.”
White had an outstanding freshman year for the Tar Heels, breaking the freshman scoring record previously held by a guy named Michael Jordan, and despite many people thinking he was going to be a four-year guy at UNC White will be at the NBA Draft waiting to hear his name called.
He might not know exactly where he’ll end up, but whichever team takes a chance on him White is ready to hit the ground running.
“My whole life I’ve had doubters and people telling me what I can and can’t do,” White said. “In high school people told me I wouldn’t be McDonalds All-American and 5-star recruit, I did that. In college they told me I wouldn’t start and make a major impact, I proved people wrong with that. People told me I’d be a 4-year guy at North Carolina well I’m here now and a top-10 draft pick.”