Eventful Spring For U19 Hopeful Caleb Swanigan
Caleb Swanigan (Homestead H.S./Fort Wayne, Ind.) has experienced a busy spring, and he hopes the summer is the same way.
After competing in the 2015 Nike Hoop Summit, McDonald’s All-American Game and Jordan Brand Classic this past spring, the 6-foot-9 center is one of 16 finalists at training camp for the USA Basketball Men’s U19 team, which will practice in Colorado Springs June 15- 20 and Athens, Greece June 21- 26 before competing in the FIBA U19 Championship in Crete, Greece June 27- July 5.
“It has been fun. It has kept me busy. I always have something to do. I have been travelling a lot.
“Most of them (the events) are selection events. It is a big honor to play in them against the best. It gets you better. Something like this, is always fun to go to, because it gets you experience and ready for the college game.”
On April 1, Swanigan played for the East Team in Chicago at the 2015 McDonald’s All-American Game. He added two points, five rebounds, two blocks and one steal in 15 minutes.
Swanigan followed that performance by scoring two points and pulling down three rebounds for the 2015 USA Junior National Select Team, which fell to the World Select Team 103-101 in the 18th annual Nike Hoop Summit on April 11th in Portland, Oregon.
Less than a week later, Swanigan participated in the 2015 Jordan Brand Classic in Brooklyn, New York, where he recorded four points, four rebounds, two steals, one assist and one block in 20 minutes of action.
Swanigan explains that he decided to participate in these events in preparation for the U19 team training camp.
“Definitely, I have been working since Nike Hoop Summit ended, even the Jordan Brand, I have been working to try to make this team. I want to get a good going momentum for college.
“I have been focusing on my conditioning and taking my time to play more fluidly.”
Additionally, Swanigan signed a National Letter of Intent with Purdue University.
As member of the 2014 USA U17 World Championship Team, Swanigan participated in training camp before winning gold in the FIBA U17 World Championship in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
“It was a lot more people trying out then. This year it seems like it is more exclusive. They both are very competitive though. I am not sure that I will make the team, but if I did, it would be great because it is more competitive.”
At the 2014 FIBA worlds, he played in all seven games, averaging 8.0 points, 5.7 rebounds and 1.8 steals per game while shooting 69.9 percent from the field and 77.4 percent from the foul line.
After preparing with an eventful few months, Swanigan is determined to make another red, white and blue team.
“It would mean a lot. My ultimate goal is to be an Olympian, making this team would be a step up that ladder.
“I always set goals for myself. I set goals for this spring. One of my goals is to make this team to end my high school career.”
Swanigan will soon know if his goal has been met as the 2015 USA Basketball Men’s U19 World Championship Team is expected to be announced Wednesday June 17.