He is a point guard who finished his college basketball career with the Louisville Cardinals men’s basketball team in 2013. Recently, he helped lead his team to the NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball championship. He was the 2012 and 2013 Big East Tournament MVP as well as a 2013 Academic All-American.
Growing up in a rough, crime-ridden area of Seattle, his father was mostly absent from his life, struggling with drugs, alcohol addiction, and being in and out of jail. His mother worked three jobs to support his family, and his siblings also had brushes with the law. However, at a young age, he decided to take a different route. At 13, he taught himself to drive so he could find his father. He found him in a drug den with a gun, contemplating suicide and was able to successfully talk him out of doing so. He soon found a love for sports, and though he was told he was too light at first, managed to play both football and basketball.
Danny Cage, youth pastor at Mount Calvary Christian Center in Seattle said of him, “He had so many people pulling at him at such a young age. He wanted to be focused spiritually through that. It separated him from the pack. He would study scriptures, and fast, and would ask to be held accountable.”
When his team won the NCAA championship, he told reporters, “First off, I got to thank my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, for blessing us for this opportunity. I thank God, and without my teammates, without my parents, my girlfriend, my sisters, my brothers, none of this would be possible. I’m just thankful to God. Today, his father and siblings all have learned about Jesus through his life. He said in an interview, “God lifts us up so we can lift Him up. He’s definitely using me in basketball to give Him glory and to use me to show other kids that God is with you and God has a plan for you no matter whether it’s basketball, football or being a doctor.”
His name is Peyton Siva.