Michael Jordan Essay

Submitted By britto24
Words: 1265
Pages: 6

A The Early Years of the Great One

Michael Jeffrey Jordan was born on February 17, 1963, in Brooklyn, New

York. When he was still very young, Michael and his family moved to Wilmington,

North Carolina. Michael is the seconds youngest of five children. He has two older

brothers, Ronnie and Larry, an older sister named Delores, and a younger sister,

Roslyn. Michael's Dad, James, worked at an electric plant, and his mother, Deloris,

worked at a bank. The Jordan family lived in a two-story house in Wilmington, a

quiet town on the Cape Fear River. Michael's parents worked hard to provide a

comfortable life for their family. Michael learned about hard work and the value of


As a kid, Michael played baseball, basketball, and football. His favorite was

baseball, but he also spent hours playing basketball in his backyard on a court his

dad had built. Michael played a lot of one-on-one games against his brother Larry,

who was taller, a year older, and more talented than Michael. Larry always won.

The constant losses fueled Michael's competitiveness and made him determined to

become a better player.

Michael Jordan did not make his high school varsity basketball team as a

sophomore, the varsity coaches felt he was too small and not good enough to play at

the varsity level. They felt he was better suited for the junior varsity team. Michael

was disappointed, but he kept practicing hard, and it really paid off. In fact, in his

first season with the J.V team, he averaged 25 points per game.

Between the 10th and 11th grades, Michael grew to 6' 3". Because he had

improved as a player, he made the varsity team and got to play along side his older

brother Larry. Michael played so well in his junior season, that he was invited to

attend the Five-Star Basketball Camp in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania during the

summer before his senior year. Five-Star is a camp where the best U.S. high school

basketball players compete against one another to determine how they rank amongst

each other. Michael won 10 trophies at the camp, including two MVP awards. The

Five-Star Camp was the turning point of Michael's life as an athlete. He realized

that basketball was his best sport, and he set a goal: to earn a college basketball

scholarship. By his senior year at Laney High, Michael had grown to 6' 5". He

graduated with a B+ average. On the court, he averaged 27.8 points per game as a

senior. Michael achieved his goal: He earned a college basketball scholarship to the

University of North Carolina.

Michael Jordan at North Carolina

Michael wasn't expected to become a star at the University of North Carolina

(UNC). His coaches thought he had a chance to be a good player, but not a great

one. In his first practice game, all doubts about Michael's talent quickly

disappeared. Michael made an eye-popping dunk that had the whole team, and

coaching staff in awe. Head coach Dean Smith later put Michael in the starting

lineup at guard. It was a special honor, because only three freshmen had ever started

for Coach Smith at North Carolina. Michael averaged 13.5 points per game and

was named the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) Rookie of the Year. The Tar

Heels made it back to the NCAA championship game. They faced the Georgetown

University Hoyas, who were led by seven-foot center Patrick Ewing. The game was

played on March 29, 1982, in the Superdome, in New Orleans, Louisiana. It was an

exciting contest that wasn't decided until the final seconds. UNC was trailing,

62-61, with 15 seconds left to play. As would happen many times later in his career,

Michael had the ball with the game on the line. The freshmen coolly launched a

17-foot jump shot. It went in! UNC won, 63-62, to earn its first national title in 25

years. "The Shot" made Michael famous among college basketball fans.