‘Hair’s’ the problem: Basketball player overcomes self-interest to become part of a team

Gabby Martinez

Dedication: the quality of being committed to a task or purpose. For senior Arthur Vivero his purpose is clear and his commitment to basketball is an understatement. The rush of the crowd, the suspense of the buzzer, and the pressure to win; that is what fuels him to not only be his best, but to consistently improve.

Basketball has helped Arthur athletically and mentally as well.

“Basketball has taught me that no matter what you’re up against, if you work hard and fear nothing, you can be prepared for everything,” Arthur said.

Arthur’s family has recognized his talent since he was young, and has watched a young committed child grow into a talented athlete.

“My older cousins always played [basketball] and didn’t let me join in,” Arthur said. “That motivated me more, and little by little I got better. Eventually, they didn’t want to play without me.”

Those types of situations never slowed him down and, to Arthur, they were just more motivation to improve. Although Arthur remained focused at some point, his beliefs clashed with school policy. During his freshman year his long hair went against the basketball team’s dress code, and although he had a love for the sport, he was reluctant to cut it. Unfortunately, this resulted in him not playing his freshman year.

“I felt like my hard work and dedication meant more than some hair policy, if they choose what you looked like over how hard you worked on the court then I wasn’t in the right place,” Arthur said. “I had to make a choice, so I played until they kicked me out”

With time, the urge to play became unbearable, so Arthur gave in and cut his hair. Wasting no time, he went to work and led the varsity team his sophomore year.

“Arthur isn’t just our friend, but a leader,” teammate Quaylon Newton said. “Everyone on the team respects his attitude and his dedication the sport.”

His dedication to the game has made Arthur a leader on the court.

“He’s one of our key players, he’s always giving nothing but his all” assistant coach Jonathan Hines said. “He’s always on the court first, making his times during practice and giving us those key points during games.”

To Arthur, the greatest accomplishment is yet to come.

“My greatest accomplishment will be when we win the district championship this year and hang that banner in the gym,” Arthur said.