Igor Almeida a native from Praia, Cape Verde is one of the featured players on Castleton men’s basketball team. The senior forward balances many different aspects of life including basketball, his education, community advisor, and even marriage! Igor took some time to sit down and talk about his life.
Q. What’re your goals for the rest of your senior season?
A. My goals for the rest of my senior season is to get more wins. We’ve had a couple games that I felt we should have won, but we weren’t able to because of our own mistakes. Sometimes we are our worst enemy, and I believe we are much better as team now and we can pick up more wins before the end of the season.
Q. How long have you played basketball?
A. I’ve been playing basketball since I was a kid. My mom used to play basketball and she was really good at it, and so I used to go to her practices from a very young age and that’s how I started playing basketball.
Q. What is your fondest memory of the game?
A. My fondest memory of the game is when I caught my first dunk this year. It is funny because everything happened so fast that I didn’t react to it or celebrate it. I was so focus on the game and what we were trying to do that it was like I made a regular lay up. It wasn’t until after the game that it came to me that I really dunked during a game. And I say it’s my fondest memory of the game because I’ve been working on myself for a long time now trying to get stronger and more athletic, and I finally accomplished that.
Q. What is it like coming to CU from another country?
A. Coming to CU was a big deal for me especially at the time that I was transferring. I was looking for a school that was not very expensive but that still gave me the opportunity to get a high level of education. CU also allowed me to continue to do what I love, which is playing sports. As I graduate this year, I have the opportunity to start working in my field of studies right away and that is thanks to all my professors in the business department.
Q. Now I know you’re married how has that aspect been? Is it challenging being at school at times?
A. I have a great relationship with my wife. She’s the sweetest thing ever and she’s there for me no matter what. Being married and being away has been challenging for the fact that we don’t get to see each other all the time, but we both understand the situation we’re in. This is also a good experience for us as we learn to cherish and appreciate every second that we spend together and never take each other for granted.
Q. How do you balance all the different things you do on campus?
A. To balance all my activities on campus I just try to stay in top of my stuff as much as possible, especially with classes. I think that as long as I’m able to take care of my classes responsibilities I will be fine to do the other activities. So what I do is try to do all my work during the week, so when the weekend comes I have time to rest and enjoy myself a little bit. It is kind hard to do so while playing basketball, but just having games, especially away games, helps me refresh my mind and get away from school responsibilities.
Q. Favorite food?
A. My favorite food would be a mix of Cape Verdean food and Spanish food.
Q. Favorite movie?
A. I don’t really have a favorite movie, but I like movies with a lot of actions and with some comedy involved in it. For example, bad boys, fast and furious, San Andreas, Jumanji, and mission impossible.
Q. Who was your basketball idol?
A. My basketball idol is Lebron James.
Q. What do you think of Kobe’s death?
A. Kobe’s death was just very sad. No one expected him to die so soon, especially in that way. He was a role model to many people and did amazing things on and off the court and it’s just heartbreaking that he was taken from us like that. There was so much more that he could’ve done to the world, and I believe that he was just getting ready to start the second chapter of his life where he was going to touch people’s life in a different way than what he had done before. I could see him being a really good basketball coach.
Q. Advice to aspiring basketball players?
A. My advice for aspiring players is to be humble and always work hard. By being humble I mean being a coachable player, listening to teammates, and understand that no matter how good you are everyone has something to teach you. Also, it is important to take time to your on your craft. The game of basketball is always evolving and in order to be a good player you must always work to improve your skills.