Athlete Profile: Destini French

Name:  Destini French
Sport: Basketball
Hometown:  Playa del Rey, Calif.
Major:  University studies
Year in School: Freshman
How long involved in basketball: Since age seven or eight.

What position do you play and what does it entail?
Center. We do all the dirty work — getting rebounds, blocking shots and shooting layups.

Why did you start playing?
My parents put me in basketball. They knew I would be tall so they put me in and let it happen.

What is your favorite thing about basketball and why?
The energy from the crowd when there is a good play, and the atmosphere of games.

Why did you come to MSU?
I was emailed during the recruiting process. I set up an official visit to see the school and learn what the program was all about. I liked the peacefulness and the atmosphere of the school. I enjoyed meeting the team and staff and I knew they would take me in. They also had the same religious and moral beliefs. Also, I like that everyone smiles at me when I walk by.

What is your motivation before a competition?
I pray first to ask God to get me through the game, and what I should do to make sure it happens. I also listen to motivational music, or music with a nice beat to get myself ready and energized.

Do you plan to continue competing in basketball after graduation?
I tore my ACL and meniscus in my left knee right before my senior year of high school. The doctor said I could play one more year but that if I continued to play I might not be able to walk later in life, so I am done.

What do you think is the key to your success as a student athlete?
Organization and staying motivated. It helps to have a planner and be good at communicating with people. Don’t let pressure and time constraints overtake you and your studies.

Do you have any awards or achievements you have received while involved in basketball?
My freshman and junior year we won the California Interscholastic Federation divisional championships. Junior year I was MVP of the week.

Do you have an inspirational person or quote?
My parents. My dad passed away five years ago; he was the one who showed me the way. He would take me to the park to practice skills, and I decided I would continue to play for him. My mom works hard as a single mother and I want to pay them back for everything they have done for me.

Do you have any other hobbies/activities/interests?
Photography and film, hanging out with friends and swing dancing.

What is your favorite class at MSU and why?
In the summer before my freshman year I took Writing 101 with Jill Davis.  I learned how to write and how to appreciate the little things and nature. She is my favorite teacher so far because she looks at more than writing.

Is there anything else you would like to tell students/readers about MSU basketball?
It is an exciting sport to watch; the team is like a family. It takes a lot of work to be a student-athlete but it is worth it in end.