Note: The following appears in the December issue of Orange: The Experience. For full access to all of the publication's content, join IPTAY today by calling 864-656-2115.
“It’s about educating, evolving and executing.”
A triple threat in his own right during the course of his illustrious playing career, former Tiger standout point guard and current men’s basketball director of player development Terrell McIntyre uses the aforementioned “three E’s” as the guiding principles of the new Triple Threat program.
“I want to help provide our players with career opportunities outside of playing basketball because not everybody can play professionally,” stated McIntyre when discussing the rationale for Triple Threat. “What we’re working toward is building and developing our players as students and as people.”
Inspired by the high degree of success produced by the football program’s renowned player development program, P.A.W. Journey, McIntyre and head coach Brad Brownell laid the foundation for Triple Threat prior to McIntyre taking on his role as director of player development in August. Now with his brainchild taking shape, McIntyre is looking to change the lives of Clemson’s players for the better by, above all else, providing them with a taste of the real world.
“It gave me an opportunity to be back around my old program and back in Clemson, a place that means a lot to me. When this opportunity presented itself, I decided to take it on and help teach the Clemson players how to embrace all that being a student-athlete at this university has to offer.”
Centered upon the premise of providing student-athletes with opportunities to better prepare them for life after basketball, Triple Threat is appropriate in name and structure, as the basketball-themed pun of triple threat fits well with the man responsible for giving the program life.
From 1995-99, McIntyre was a key cog on the hardwood for the Tigers, excelling as a floor general and consistently dribbling, passing and shooting the basketball with skill enough to warrant earning a reputation as a triple threat. McIntyre went on to have a highly-successful playing career overseas, winning the Italian Supercup once and the Italian League MVP award twice en route to having his jersey retired by Siena-based club Montepaschi Siena.
But despite the proficiency of his playing career, McIntyre experienced a small window of career purgatory following his retirement from basketball in 2011, as he questioned what he could possibly do to fill the void left behind by walking away from the game that he had molded his life around up to that point.
“I know what it means when you finish your playing career to have a gray area because I experienced it at one point in my life,” he admitted.
Opting to return to Clemson in order to finish his bachelor’s degree thereafter, McIntyre understood the importance of reaping the benefits associated with being a student-athlete and is now instilling that understanding upon the Clemson men’s basketball players as part of Triple Threat.
“Obviously, as a college basketball player, you always want to keep playing, but it’s never too early to start thinking about what you would want to do if you couldn’t play basketball again. That’s the mindset that you have to have, because it won’t last forever.”
Featuring three distinct components, Triple Threat is a program that builds upon itself, as each phase ushers in a new phase upon completion. Beginning with the education phase, which is geared toward freshmen, McIntyre engages with the athletes and constructs a solid rapport with them, as he serves as a life coach of sorts in helping them to gain a grasp on the taxing day-to-day schedule that comes with being a student-athlete at a major university.
From there, the evolution phase takes hold, as the abundance of career and mentorship opportunities at McIntyre’s disposal comes in handy for players searching for a niche in the professional world that they can embrace wholeheartedly once their playing days are behind them.
Lastly, Triple Threat presents players with an execution phase, as upperclassmen are called upon to lead the team and take advantage of each and every educational and professional opportunity in front of them as they find the perfect balance between basketball and life outside of basketball. After that, a fulfilling life and bountiful opportunities should await the players who have undertaken the Triple Threat program with flying colors.
Thankful for the fulfilling experiences that suiting up for the Tigers enabled him to experience both as a player and as a former player, McIntyre came to recognize late in his playing career that college basketball can be used as a pedestal for more than just preparing student-athletes for the next phase of their playing careers. It can also be used as a pedestal for providing student-athletes with countless fruitful opportunities to make the most of all that gleaning an on-court and off-court college education provides.
“The life that I’ve had until now wouldn’t have been possible without Clemson University, because it put me in position to get a degree and build a life for myself,” said McIntyre.
Once a valiant leader on the hardwood for the Tigers, McIntyre is now fervently taking on his present-day role as a leader in life for current and future generations of Tigers. Determined to make his magnum opus, Triple Threat, part of the new standard for college player development programs, McIntyre is aiming to brighten the futures of Clemson’s players as best he can.
“I’ve built great relationships with the players,” added McIntyre. “I talk to them every day and try to give them all of the advice that I can and be a positive influence in their lives.”
Widely regarded as a selfless game-changer, leader and facilitator when serving as a point guard, McIntyre still serves in those capacities for the Tigers as part of his life after basketball, as he is the living embodiment of what it means to be a triple threat.
And with McIntyre’s life-changing Triple Threat program in place, many more Tigers will assuredly come to garner that same reputation for themselves, educating, evolving and executing their way to success.