A lot of star athletes go through controversy and Matt Jones, Duke signee, is starting to learn that the hard way.
The young Blue Devil goes down the hardwood floor at Broughton high school, blows past his defender and stops just inside the right wing for a pull-up jump show that misses hard off of the rim.
Quickly a short burly man sporting a University of North Carolina cap breaks out in laughter and yells, “Duke Sucks!”
The next time down the floor, Jones gets his defender with a crossover, steps back and sinks a long range shot.
“Boo!” the burly man shots. “Duke still sucks.”
The senior shooting guard at De Soto (De Soto, Texas) shakes his head and smiles before getting back on defense in the Dragons’ 57-50 quarterfinal win over Kinston (Kinston, North Carolina) at a holiday invitational in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Although Jones goes through this adversity, hit still doesn’t hurt his confidence. He knows it comes with the territory, especially when you are playing in a tournament located where there are more UNC fans then Duke fans.
“I was definitely feeling the hate…People always have something to say because I’m going to Duke. They go really hard with it too. It’s funny at this point. Hard to believe that people care that much,” says Jones.
Aarolyn Jones, Matt’s mother, has come to terms with the negativity over the last year.
“He’s such a likable kid that It’s hard to believe anyone could dislike him…He’s really positive and he gets along with everybody. Definitely, as a mother, you don’t want to see people talking bad about your kid, but it’s beyond your control. Still, I’m like the mother hen. I don’t want anyone messing with my baby,” says Aarolyn.