I visited the Utah Jazz's locker room Wednesday night to talk a little Gopher football.
Jazz guard C.J. Miles turned pro right after graduation from Skyline High in Dallas, which as Gopher fans know, is the alma mater of four players from the 2011 team: receiver Da'Jon McKnight, cornerback Troy Stoudermire, and linebackers Keanon Cooper and Spencer Reeves.
Miles (top left) said he doesn't really know the other three. But McKnight? "I've known him for years," Miles said. "He's my best friend's little brother. Da'Jon was always hanging around as a little kid."
Turns out, the Miles and McKnight families are close; the fathers have even driven to Oklahoma City together to watch C.J. play NBA basketball. "They're running mates, I guess," he said.
McKnight (bottom left), who led the Gophers with 51 catches and four touchdown receptions as a senior, called Miles last month for some advice about turning pro. "He wanted to know, how did I choose my agent, how much preparation did I do, how did I deal with everything," said Miles, who was drafted in 2005 and is already in his seventh NBA season despite not turning 25 until next month. "I think Da'Jon will be a great pro, 100 percent. He's got good size, good speed, good hands."
In fact, Miles said it wouldn't have been inconceivable for McKnight to play basketball like him, had he chosen that path. "He was a really good basketball player as a kid," Miles said of his fellow Texan, now 22. "He could have gone to school somewhere as a basketball player and done just as well as he did in football."