Brad Haugabrook ballin' for UNF

Spinnaker

The UNF men’s basketball team has won seven of its last eight games and are coming off a 2-0 road trip defeating Florida Gulf Coast and Stetson. Though one player on the team is having a good season. Brad Haugabrook was recently named co-player of the week for the Atlantic Sun Conference. With the two road wins, the Ospreys improved to 8-8 for the season. Haugabrook, junior starting point guard, has been playing basketball since he was 5 years old. He first played organized basketball through a local police athletic league in his hometown Newark, N.J. He really matured as a player through daily practices with his older cousin, who grew up in the same neighborhood. By the time Haugabrook reached high school, he started on the freshman team at St. Patricks, the next year he moved up to junior varsity, and he spent his final two years on the varsity squad. Haugabrook’s mother lives in Newark and has made it out to a game, and his father who lives in Miami plans to make it out later this season. “My dream was always to play college ball,” he said. But it wasn’t straight to Division I for Haugabrook. His awards in high school were far more based on his academics, not his athletics, he said. He started out a Hillsbourough Community College before he met UNF head coach Matt Driscoll, who Haugabrook refers to as the “best coach I has ever had.” Driscoll, who was able to offer Haugabrook a scholarship, has also been able to engage in a special coach-player relationship. “[Haugabrook] has really embraced coaching and understands what we need out of him as a point and a leader,” Driscoll said. “His focus toward his academics has helped him focus on what is really important.” Haugabrook doesn’t like to think about what’s after college. “My main goal is to graduate,” he said. Haugabrook, the shortest of the starters at 6-foot, serves as a ball handler and point guard on the team. His job is to start plays and organize the court. In the six conference games, Haugabrook leads the team with 73 points, 12.2 per game. He also has three times as many assists as any other player on the team. And his expectations are high for the season. “It’s all about making the A-Sun tournament,” he said. The Ospreys are 3-3 in conference play and tied with Jacksonville University for sixth place in the conference. The top seven are eligible for the tournament in Macon, Ga. March 3 – March 6.