Ever since he first donned a maroon and gray uniform, Dobyns-Bennett senior Connor Mitchell has been an imposing force on the basketball court.
At 6-foot-7, D-B’s star center is the tallest player on the team. Mitchell has been able to parlay his height and athletic abilities into a formula that often makes life difficult for opposing teams.
In his final year in an Indians uniform, Mitchell’s leadership skills, along with his eye for detail, have been an important part of the Tribe's 7-1 conference record.
Mitchell believes focus and learning to control fear of failure are important lessons.
“I heard a story about Michael Jordan missing seven straight field goals in one game,” Mitchell said. “But even though he had missed those shots, Jordan was never afraid to put it up an eighth time.
“Don’t let your emotions get the best of you,” he said. “You’ve got to maintain focus.”
Mitchell intends to continue his basketball career when he begins college this fall. He said he is optimistic about the possibility of playing at a school in the region.
“I’ve spoken with some schools in the area, made a few visits and sent out some emails. I’m hopeful I’ll be playing college basketball this time next year,” he said.
Times-News Sports Writer Jason Mullins recently spoke with Connor Mitchell. Here’s what he had to say:
Who is your favorite athlete?
Dwight Howard is definitely my favorite athlete.
What is your favorite movie?
I would have to go with “Braveheart.” There’s such a raw quality to the story line. Plus, I like the theme of fighting for victory. I love watching movies like that.
What is your best athletic memory?
That’s a tough question. I have a lot of great memories, but winning the conference during my freshman year and getting my first slam dunk stand out the most.
What is your most painful athletic experience?
Losing to Sullivan South last year in the conference tournament was tough. That was a really tough night.
In a movie made about your life, who would play you?
I don’t know. People are always telling me that I look like Ashton Kutcher (laughs), so I guess I will go with that answer.
If you hosted a dinner party and could invite any three people, who would they be?
I can think of a lot of people who I would possibly invite to come to a dinner party. But if I had to narrow it down to three, I would go with Jesus Christ, Ronald Reagan and Michael Jordan. I think that would be an interesting dinner.
If you could have a superpower, what would it be?
Since I’m a basketball player, I would want my superpower to help me play better, so I think it would be the ability to have a super hop.
Do you have any superstitions?
I actually do have one. I always have to have my lucky socks for every game. That’s really my only superstition.
That raises a follow-up question: You do wash your lucky socks between games, don’t you?
(Laughs) Oh, yeah. I wouldn’t do that to my teammates.
Do you have any nicknames you care to admit?
Last year, I picked up the nickname the Kingsport Kangaroo.