The National Ultimate Training Camp offers a cross-section of some of the finest young talent from around the world. Jimmy Mickle interviews Dillon Lanier, a rising junior at Carolina Friends School, about his experience at the camp.
July 29, 2014 by Tiina Booth in Sponsored with 5 comments
About ten years ago, when I was still an English teacher, I would naturally include Seinfeld references when talking to a class, as in, “I had a BIG SALAD for lunch,” or “Please don’t be a low-talker when presenting,” or “Happy Festivus!” Most of the students would laugh and know what I was referencing. It is helpful to have a common cultural touchstone when developing relationships with a group of teenagers.
It is crushing when you find out they have moved past you. Eventually my Seinfeld references were met with silence. They had no idea what I was talking about.
I am afraid that the counselors in Session B learned this lesson this week. Read below to find out how they fared at the Talent Show.
This interview is between NUTC counselor Jimmy Mickle and camper Dillon Lanier, a rising junior at Carolina Friends School in Durham, NC.
JM: Hey everyone, I’m at NUTC 2014, Session B, and I’m joined by NUTC camper Dillon Lanier. Really excited to have you here, Dillon. I picked you as a player to be interviewed because I’ve enjoyed watching you play all week. I think you play the game really smoothly and I can see you as one of the bright faces in the future of ultimate. How long have you been playing ultimate? How did you get started?
DL: I’ve been playing ultimate for 7 or 8 years now, I started off playing with my Dad who played a little in high school and took me out to pick up games. I got involved in [Triangle Youth Ultimate League] early on and played summer league and on the U16 YCC team.
What sports did you play before ultimate?
Basketball was my first sport; I’m still playing that. I run cross country and also swim during the summer.
How did last year’s high school season go?
We won our first southerns title, against Independence High School. It was really exciting; we had lots of seniors on the team.
That’s awesome, are you looking to step into a bigger leadership role next year with so many graduating players?
Yeah, definitely, I think we had 8 graduating seniors. Liam [Searles-Bohs] (who was also a camper this week) and I are looking to be captains this upcoming year and hopefully we lead our school to another Southerns title.
Nice! After watching you both play this week I would have to say you have a pretty good chance. Looking toward your future in Ultimate, what kind of player do you see yourself as? Anything you want to accomplish?
The reason I came to NUTC was to become a better handler, and feel more comfortable with my throws. I’ve been primarily a cutter so far and I want to be able to handle too. I’m hoping to play for the YCC team for the next couple years and try out for Ring of Fire at some point and make that team.
Now to the good stuff: I know you live in Chapel Hill, but what do I have to do to convince you to come to the University of Colorado? We all know you belong there…
Haha, I’ll have to look into it. Wes Chow (another NUTC counselor) has been bugging me all week. I’ll definitely have to check UNC out though, I live right on campus.
Sounds good, as long as you promise to give Colorado a chance…So do you have a favorite moment from NUTC this week, maybe one from on the field, and one from off of it?
My favorite on the field moment was our first game after teams were assembled. My team was down 5-3 at half(games to 9) and a lot of people were pretty down. We came out and held on offense the first point, then broke twice to take the lead. We ended up losing on universe in the pouring rain but it was a really fun game. Off the field, I’ve had a great time talking with the counselors, talking to you at lunches and dinners, talking to Wes, and all the other counselors. Everyone has been helpful and really willing to give tips.
Great to hear! So last night at the talent show all the counselors sang a Backstreet Boys song, and, to our disappointment, almost none of the campers joined in. Our only explanation to the lack of involvement was that maybe the song was a little dated. Do you know the Backstreet Boys?
I’ve heard of the Backstreet Boys but I honestly didn’t know the lyrics. I did know the Taylor Swift song that was performed earlier in the show…
(shakes head in sadness) I guess we will have to go a little newer next time…Thanks for joining me Dillon. I’m really excited to watch you keep getting better over the coming years, always rooting for you.
Thanks for having me, and good luck at worlds with Johnny Bravo. I’m honored you chose me to do the interview; it definitely topped off a great week at NUTC for me! It was great having you as a counselor this week. I hope you’ll be back next year!