After plenty of thought and reflection, I have decided to suspend my pursuit of a career in basketball. That’s right, the NCAA slogan holds true: I plan on going pro in something other than sports. This year’s coaching carousel did not work in my favor, and while I’m always open to new opportunities, I believe it is best fit that I put my full efforts into pursuing work outside of basketball.
To put it frank: I am simply running out of money. I am grateful to have a Master’s degree debt free, but my savings account is thin. I love this game with all my heart, but I also have to make ends meet. It would be disingenuous for me to say I had zero opportunities with basketball programs. Had a few looks from junior colleges for some part-time jobs and a couple of volunteer opportunities at DIII schools, but I simply cannot afford to work that way anymore. I have medications to pay for, and I need to build up capital.
I spent these past two years living in almost complete social isolation, saving up every penny. This buys me maybe two months max before I have to move back in with my parents in Indianapolis. Who knows, maybe I will find a job in corporate America, and find out that makes me happy. If so, this may be it. This may be the end of the road for “Coach Barnthouse.” If not, I am sure I will do what is necessary to be ready should an opportunity in the basketball world present itself.
I write this somewhat at peace. I did everything I could to break into the world of basketball. Sometimes it isn’t in the immediate cards.
However, I’ve also set myself up to be a great candidate in the world of journalism or public relations. Wherever that path takes me, I know I have the tools and drive to succeed. My six years with Ole Miss and Cincinnati will be a time I cherish for a lifetime.
Maybe this is goodbye, maybe this is “see-you-later” to the game I love. All I know is that it isn’t in the cards for me right now.
My name is Matt Barnthouse, and I am going pro in something other than sports.