Once a problem child, Parsons is now a leader

By Adam Silverstein
August 31, 2010

After back-to-back National Championship seasons, Florida Gators head coach Billy Donovan was faced with a dilemma: stay in Gainesville, FL, or move on to the NBA and the Orlando Magic. Eventually deciding to return to the Gators, Donovan was met with a young team highlighted by a star in guard Nick Calathes, who would leave two seasons later after failing to lead his team to a single NCAA Tournament appearance.

Throughout those two seasons, Donovan was aggravated with many of the younger players on his team – it even went so far where, on an occasion or two, he locked them out of the gym and refused to let them wear Florida colors.

In an interview with FOX Sports‘s Jeff Goodman, senior forward Chandler Parsons explains that he was one of those problem children causing Donovan so much grief.

“Coach found out [the players were talking about North Carolina’s Tyler Hansbrough] and told me he’d take one season of Hansbrough over four seasons from me,” Parsons said. “When I came in as a freshman, my mindset was wrong. I didn’t buy into coach’s philosophy, I didn’t play defense. I just didn’t get it. I just didn’t understand what it takes. […] I just wish I had realized everything earlier.”

While speaking with Parsons, Goodman came to the conclusion that he once was “high maintenance” and was in Donovan’s “doghouse” but is now someone who can laugh at his past and focus on the future.

“I know I’ve got to be a more consistent shooter – from three and from the line,” Parsons added. “My confidence is there now. I think I can play with anyone.”

One Comment

  1. Gatorbuc15 says:

    It’s really great to see how much he matured. Once a problem, now a leader. I salute you Mr. Parsons.

    I believe he will lead UF to a lot of wins this year.

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