Offensive Most Valuable Player: Carson Thompson, Canadian, Sophomore
Whether he’s playing football or basketball, Carson Thompson knows how to rack up the accolades.
Thompson was named the 2017 McAlester News-Capital MVP for the all-area football team. Now, here he is, once again, as the 2018 McAlester News-Capital Offensive MVP for the boys basketball all-area squad. Thompson averaged 22.8 points and 6.7 rebounds per game to earn the honor, helping the Cougars to a district championship and an appearance in the regional tournament.
The Canadian guard discussed how he was able to excel at both sports.
“Every time one season ends, you got to start working to go to the next season, and just keep on preparing for both,” he said. “They’re both equally the same for me, so you got to kind of like, prepare for both equally.”
Thompson said it usually takes a week to get in the gym and get his shot back when transitioning from football to basketball. He said he went to the gym four out of the five nights the week after Canadian’s first round football playoff loss to Maysville.
He cited the district championship as his favorite moment of the season. Thompson also received all tournament honors during the Pitt 8 Conference tournament in January, which he called it special and honored to be seen as one of the top players in the Pitt 8. He opened up on the Pitt 8 semifinal game against Savanna, in which the Cougars could have pulled off an upset, leading, 28-23, in the fourth quarter and 31-29 with less than five minutes to go before the Bulldogs scored 11 unanswered points and going on to repeat as tournament champions. Canadian won the third place game. He said Savanna started pressing, and that the Cougars didn’t handle the pressure as well as they should have, saying the team should’ve kept calm.
Yet it’s not just on the football field or the basketball court in which he is a success.
“He may be the smartest student in our school, he’s definitely a straight-A student, great young man, those are his attributes,” outgoing Canadian head coach and high school principal David Smith said of Thompson.
Thompson said he most wants to improve his running the floor and working on his defensive game, specifically blocking out and rebounding, despite being Canadian’s leading rebounder this season. Thompson wasn’t quite able to achieve his goals of winning more than 20 games, the Cougars won 16, making it to state or averaging more than 25 points, but he said that he is motivated to fight harder to achieve that next year.
“You have to look at everything like it’s not good enough, and you have to keep on saying that you can get it better and just keep on improving,” Thompson said.