It is pretty rare for a D-1 basketball player to suit up for his home town school. SDSU senior Brayden Carlson has been doing that for four years now and he loves every minute of it.
Just as Nate Wolters becoming a house hold name, Brayden Carlson was moving across town onto the SDSU campus. For three years Carlson studied Wolters and now this year he has become the talk of his town.
"He was overshadowed by Nate obviously, because Nate had his hands on the ball quite a bit. We saw some games how well Brayden could play though," SDSU Men's Head Coach Scott Nagy said.
"I always joke that the point guard position is my natural position, but I enjoyed playing it as a backup behind Nate. I learned a lot from him and now I'm getting the chance to show what I can do at the position," SDSU Senior Guard Brayden Carlson said.
What he has done is bump his points per game total up from 9 to just under 16 a game. He also leads his squad in steals, assists, three-point percentage, and minutes played. All are things he is installing in the underclassmen.
"That's the case with any freshman class. You try to help them out, because they are going to help you. As far as keeping the tradition and legacy going with the program, it's important every year to bring guys in and show them how we do things and hopefully they grow from there," Carlson said.
Carlson has started 80 consecutive games in a Jackrabbit uniform, but he has been suiting up in Brookings since he was in grade school.
"Brookings is a special place, it's my home town. I grew up here. I've went to middle school, high school, and college here. Maybe I will live here someday, maybe not, but it will always have a special place in my heart," Carlson said.
He has had huge shoes to fill since Wolters left Brookings, but his teammates will be the first to tell you this year it's Carlson's town.
"He's a smart kid, he figures out how to get to the free throw line, takes smart shots, and he doesn't force the issue. When he is playing with confidence our team plays with confidence, so he's a great leader for our team," SDSU Junior Forward Cody Larson said.
Carlson and his Jackrabbits will welcome in their rival Bison this Saturday. Tip off is set for 4 o’clock.