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 Date: January 22, 2013 Contact:  Allison Miles, Special to UHV

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UHV freshman grew up playing basketball


 

UHV freshman Jeffrey Olivarez, left, dribbles the ball in a high school game during the time he attended Thomas Edison High School in San Antonio. Olivarez has played basketball since age 5.


In the closing seconds of a close high school game, an opposing player blocked a shot, sending the ball in the direction of point guard Jeffrey Olivarez.  

 

“I hit the final shot in the corner for a 3-pointer,” he said. “Everybody was excited and cheering around me. I just remember thinking, ‘I can’t believe this just happened.’”  

 

The victory that day by Thomas Edison High School was one of several reasons why the University of Houston-Victoria freshman has harbored a lifelong love of basketball.  

 

Olivarez first took to the game around age 5, picking up the basics on a church team. He loved it from the start. He honed his skills as he joined other teams, eventually playing his way across the country.  

 

“I come from a basketball family, so they were always attending my games, cheering me on,” he said. “We all love it.”  

 

Olivarez, 18, was born and raised in San Antonio. He graduated from Thomas Edison High School in 2012 before moving on to UHV.  

 

He admitted college took some adjustment, but he’s enjoyed it so far. The biggest change is the added independence, being able to do things on his own schedule, Olivarez said.  

 

Olivarez encouraged other students adjusting to school to stay focused on their courses.  

 

“It’s way different than being in high school, but it’s important to study a lot,” he said. “That’s what college is all about.”  

 

Down the road, Olivarez hopes to transform his love of athletics into a full-fledged career, eventually becoming a physical therapist, coach or trainer.  

 

In the meantime, he shoots hoops anytime he can, taking up games in the park, at schools and wherever else he can find a game. He wouldn’t mind UHV adding a Jaguars basketball team in the future.  

 

“I’d really like to see something like that happen, something else for the students,” he said.  

 

I am a Jaguar is an online feature highlighting the exceptional students who attend the University of Houston-Victoria. To nominate a student, contact Paula Cobler, UHV interim director of marketing and communications, or call 361-570-4350.

 

 

The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region, offers courses leading to more than 65 bachelor’s and master’s degree programs and concentrations in the schools of Arts & Sciences, Business Administration, Education & Human Development, and Nursing. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus as well as teaching sites in Fort Bend, Harris and Montgomery counties, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. Since its founding in 1973, UHV has provided students with a quality university education from excellent faculty at an affordable price.