During this past summer, my brother Nigel Chatman and I took it amongst ourselves to come into our upcoming seasons in the best physical and mental shape that we could absolutely be in. We were waking up at 5:00 in the morning to work out, working out during the day, and even worked out as late as midnight sometimes in a 24-hour gym. He did the football workouts and I did the basketball workouts. Nigel and I are two years apart. Growing up, we did everything together, my father raised us like twins. It was rare to see us apart from each other. Having him as a brother was an understatement because the bond was so much deeper.
September 6, 2019, I received the most gruesome news of my entire life, a feeling that's still hard to talk about to this exact day and will be for a long time. I was notified that my brother died in a car accident on his way to football practice.
I cannot describe the feeling at all, but I had absolutely no control of anything. Nothing mattered to me, and the only thing going through my mind is what am I going to do and how could I even possibly think about moving forward with anything. I wanted no parts of anything; I contemplated on staying home and not coming back to Westminster College, being done with basketball and even just separating myself from everything and everyone. But, I knew he wouldn't want that at all. I couldn't leave my teammates as well, and I knew basketball was the one way to get away and be somewhere else mentally. I came back to so much love from teammates, coaches, friends, faculty members, and some from people I have never even met. It was incredible and truly amazing. It still touches my heart to this day.
As we approach the season, we are on our third day of practice. As the team is stretching as a whole, I do a certain stretch and feel a weird pop towards my knee area. The next day I go to get an MRI, and they concluded that I had a tear in my meniscus. I was back to square one, and nothing was going right for me. As soon as I found a great outlet to free my mind, that gets taken away from me. I had to get surgery and would be sidelined for 4-6 weeks, only doing physical therapy.
Without the help of my tremendous family, amazing teammates and coaching staff, and the wonderful people at Westminster, I don't know how I could have gotten through the rest of 2019. So little do you know, you even reading this passage, you've helped me get through this journey and I cannot express how much it means.
We still have big plans heading into the second round of conference play. On the road to being great, sometimes you have to stop and fill up the gas tank. That's how I view my journey of all the events that have taken place.
So now, it's time to get back on the road.