By MATTHEW WEITZEL
IOWA CITY, Iowa — One of the University of Iowa’s most productive men’s basketball players, Reggie Evans, returned to Iowa City this week.
The two-time All-Big Ten performer and 13-year National Basketball Association (NBA) veteran visited campus this week bringing his son and two of his daughters to participate in Iowa’s summer youth camps.
“I haven’t been here for five or six years,” said Evans. “I’m glad I came because the city and campus has developed a lot. I like what I see.”
Evans spoke to the 250-plus youth campers Tuesday inside the Iowa Field House.
“My main message to the kids was to have fun and enjoy it,” Evans said. “Also, to take school seriously and listen to their parents, who work hard and make their life better. Embrace the moment and get to know their peers.”
The Pensacola, Florida, native averaged a double-double in 2001 and 2002 and reached 1,000 career points. Evans went undrafted in the 2002 NBA Draft but ultimately played for seven different NBA teams throughout his professional career.
“The people in Iowa City are genuine and humble,” said Evans. “You get organic love in Iowa City. Playing for the Hawkeyes is something I will always cherish.”
Evans, who averaged 7.1 rebounds and 4.1 points in more than 800 games in the NBA, said he is preparing for the second year of the B1G3, which is a summer half-court basketball league consisting of former NBA players.
“We play in 10 top arenas around the country,” said Evans. “All the games are on FS1. It gives a lot of us a chance to shake the rust off and work on our game.”
In addition to still playing basketball, Evans said he stays busy by helping children in the Pensacola community.
“I do camps with kids ages 5-15,” Evans said. “I am doing my part to help kids stay active in an organized environment. I am doing my best to be a basketball mentor to them and guide them the right way. I work a lot with kids at home.”