The Piedmont men’s basketball team is starting up their 2017-18 season this November. The team will return with a number of recognizable players, while bringing several new faces to the lineup, including on the sidelines.
Peyton Luken, a graduate -student at Piedmont College, has taken the role as the Graduate Assistant for the men’s basketball team. Luken played for four years at Piedmont, starting in the year 2013. He was one of the first players recruited by Coach Neely in one of Piedmont’s largest rosters.
“I think there were about 30 kids that showed up to the first day of practice in my freshman year,” Luken said. “It is crazy to think that there were only four of us left when I graduated.”
Luken was a four-year starter who finished his career in the top 15 in school history, with a three-point shooting percentage. He played valiantly in every game, and was a favorite among the Piedmont sports fan base. One of the only accomplishments Luken never managed to achieve was winning a conference championship.
“In every year that I played, we always came up short,” he said. “It was never a good feeling knowing that you played extremely hard and came up short four times in a row.”
Luken will now sit on the sidelines a get one more chance to be a part of a championship team. He has plenty of experience supporting his new position, as he served as a captain during his senior year at Piedmont.
“It is not hard coaching them, to be honest,” he said. “The only thing that I have to get used to is some of the more boring stuff, like sitting in a room and watching tons and tons of footage of us and the team we are about to play. But other than that, everything is going really smoothly.”
The Lions will have their first taste of game action on Nov. 6 in a scrimmage game against North Georgia. Luken, having played all four years of his career, is more than ready. This time, he will be lacing up a different type of shoe on game day.