Chris Herren- The Inspirational Story of the Fight Against Drugs

Chris Herren- The Inspirational Story of the Fight Against Drugs

Former NBA Chris Herren will be a guest speaker at FHS

Ashley Danello

Picture yourself surrounded by some of the best NBA players in the 1999 NBA Draft. You’re all dressed in the top-name brand suites, with your hair slicked back or combed to perfection. There’s camera’s everywhere that are all focused on the overly decorated basketball stage. And on the stage is a tall man in a black suite with a white tie, and has  a microphone in one hand, and an envelope in the other, and is announcing the Round 2, 33rd pick for the draft.

“The Round 2, 33rd pick for the Denver Nuggets is….Chris Herren!” The announcer would say over the loud speaker, and the crowd would go wild!

Chris Herren was just like any other high-school basketball player, when he had a dream to one day make it to the pro’s. He carried on his career through college, at Boston College. But after one year there, he left, and join Jerry Tarkanians Fresno State’s team.

After college, Herren was drafted by the Denver Nuggets in the 1999 NBA draft. And as a 62” guard, he played for the Nuggets and the Boston Celtics.

But after just 4 years into his dream, on December 2004, Herren was charged with the possession of heroine and a DUI with a revoked license in a Dunkin’ Donuts parking lot. Luckily, after many years of rehab and seeking professional help, he has been drug free since July 4, 2008 and sober since August 1, 2008.

One year later he launched, Hoop Dreams with Chris Herren, which is a basketball player developed program which mentors the players on and off the court. Then in 2011, he launched yet another program called The Herren Project; that was used as a way to help addicts through the recovery process.

Through both of his programs, Herren has developed a taste for motivational speaking. Since then, he has appeared before students, fellow athletes, and even prisoners. And because he has such an important message to send to the world, Chris Herren will be making a special appearance atFranklin High School(and the crowd goes wild!)!

Mr. Folan, the man helping coordinate the event, told panther book that; “believe me, you guys are going to walk away, saying it was a powerful speaker and story.”

Then I asked, how is his story and presentation different than the others that we’ve viewed, because throughout our career’s as students, we’ve seen presentation after presentation on drugs, alcohol, or bullying, and it can often be very boring. But Folan responded with an answer that might change our views on these sorts of events; “ive seen the show unguarded, that gives you bits and pieces from it, well his life is rather remarkable and unique. And because he was raised in MA, he can talk about the pressures within his high school and the culture, also the pressures he was trying to live up to.”

Folan also stated that “hes not preachy about his life, or glorifying it, its more of this is what is it”. Which is a good feature in a good public speaker; People don’t want to hear about how awesome the times were they spent doing drugs or some sort of boring sap story. The public wants to know facts, and use those facts to make sure they don’t turn their lives into one of those sap stories.

So students, don’t ditch school the day of the presentation (which doesn’t have a set date yet) because this is one worth staying for. Below is a link to the preview of his documentary that was aired on ESPN, called Unguarded.

Unguarded