"It was an amazing day for me"
For Matt Heldt, that day was Tuesday, when he woke up and knew he had made an important decision. Verbally committing to play college basketball for the Marquette Golden Eagles. It wasn't a decision he was rushing, it was just the right time, for the right place.
"I wasn't like, I'm going to commit when AAU's over, I was going to wait until I found I school where I felt, this is where I want to go, and it happened to be that just now it was Marquette." Heldt said Wednesday night following his team's summer league game at Ashwaubenon High School
So why the Golden Eagles? In Heldt's mind, the hiring of former Duke player and assistant Steve Wojciechowski as head coach was the game-changer.
"He's from Coach K, arguably the greatest coach of all-time, so he has that lineage, that great coaching lineage, and then also he's a relationships guy, and I really liked that. He's your friend first and your coach second."
"He called on his second day on the job, and said I want to make Matt a priority," said Neenah head coach Scott Bork. "(He)introduced himself, he didn't have an assistant yet. But he said as soon as I do, they're going to come up, I'm going to come up and see him. We want to make him a priority."
And the 6-10 center has some priorities of his own this summer, leading up to his senior season of high school.
"Definitely my versatility, I want to be able to stretch my game to the outside a little more, shoot 3's, and be able to drive in, and also getting stronger in the weight room and more explosive is a big thing."
"He knows he wants to get stronger, he wants to carry another 10 pounds of muscle by the time our season starts," Bork said, "Which is probably realistic wih the work that he puts in to keeping his body healthy."
Heldt led the Rockets to the D-1 state title game this past March, and while point guard Adam Pohlman is gone to Northern Michigan, Neenah's big man still sees big things on the Horizon.
"I'm excited. I think our chemistry is going to get us to be a very good team. Whatever happens, happens, but I'm very excited."