jr smith
Adam Hagy-USA TODAY Sports

Going away to college is a transformative experience. For many, it’s a four-year period where we transition from kids to adults. JR Smith skipped college to go straight to the NBA. The NBA champion is getting his college experience a bit later than most Americans, but he’s making the most of it.

The former New York Knick went viral when he joined the North Carolina A&T golf team. His admission to the school was more than a publicity stunt. Smith pulled a 4.0 GPA and was named Academic Athlete of the Year.


Smith took to social media to talk about his academic accomplishments. He talks about overcoming his Attention Deficit Disorder en route to his 4.0 grades.

“I couldn’t even describe to you what I’m feeling right now I’m not going to lie,” Smith said. “I worked extremely hard to get there… My god, Monday through Friday, 8am to 11pm, and sometimes longer. Homework when you’re not used to that stuff, boy …

“It’s even more special when you don’t think you can be successful. I heard about my disabilities, that they were going to play, that they were going to prevent me from thinking, calculating and expressing things the way I wanted. And despite everything I was able to accomplish this shit, and I’m not going to lie to you, it makes me really happy.”

Smith was perceived as more of a meme than a person during points of his NBA career. References to Hennessy, the infamous “pipe” DM, shirtless JR after the championship, and his Game 1 fiasco in the 2018 NBA Finals will live on in infamy.

But people who want to treat Smith like a clown forget that he was an integral part of Cleveland’s 3-1 comeback against Golden State in 2016, his Sixth Man of the Year Award, and 16 years in the NBA. Smith could be one of the most unpredictable players on and off the court, but there’s no doubt he was a cold-blooded killer once the game started.

It’s nice to see the world embracing this post-NBA JR. A typical college student tweeting about English homework would never draw too much attention. But JR Smith tweeting about his “dope reading” is a much different story.

We’re here for all of Smith’s college tweets. Keep ’em coming, champ.

NY/NJ hoops reporter (NBA/NCAA) & sports betting writer for XL Media. Never had the makings of a varsity athlete.