Lost in the celebration Spurs fans and the organization in selecting Dejaun Blair at the 37th spot in the 2009 NBA Draft was the Spurs 51st pick, Jack McClinton from University of Miami. All Spurs fans know is he can shoot but is there anything else about him? Let’s take a deeper look at Jack McClinton.
Before making it big at Miami, Jack began his college career at Siena where he majored in business. While at Siena he gained the nickname “Apples” and is a bit superstitious (he wears a rope around his waist for good luck). At Siena he was a six-time MAAC Rookie of the Week recipient, finished as the team leader in points, assists, defensive rebounds, free throws, field goals and led all MAAC rookies in scoring with his 16.4 ppg and played career-high 57 minutes in quadruple-overtime win over Youngstown State. He left Siena to the University of Miami after coach Siena Rob Lanier was fired after Jack’s first year.
Trying to escape anonymity seems to be Jack’s story in life. After transfering to Miami he was accidently left off the 2006-07 ACC basketball media guide and inadvertently left off the Hurricanes’ roster. But that anonymity soon was lost when he helped Miami beat then nationally-ranked Georgia Tech. Even Miami coach Frank Haith didn’t realize the tremendous player he has in Jack. “I thought he would be good, but I’d be lying if I said I thought he’d be this good,” said Haith. At Miami he averaged 19.3 points per game as a senior.
When he left Miami to enter the NBA draft, the Spurs not just selected a ball player, they drafted something more. Jack was the only player to make the All ACC Academic and All ACC First Team at Miami. The Spurs have a hard-worker and a guy who didn’t leave education behind for the fame of the NBA. He finished school.
Being drafted by the Spurs in the second-round means Jack will have earn a contract; something Jack is used to doing and he is ready. “I’m ready,” McClinton said. “It’s time to get going . . . In the second round, it doesn’t matter where you get picked. It’s all the same, it’s still the second round.”
So he is a hard-worker, ready to do what it takes to make it in the NBA, and is used to being under the radar. Sounds like he will be a great fit with the San Antonio Spurs.