PROFILES: Esteban Weaver
Considered “the new kids on the block” since arriving to Columbus’ Short North Arts District, the team at Madison-USA spoke with some of Columbus, Ohio’s own to talk Ohio, change, and the future. Esteban Weaver is arguably the most talented player in Columbus basketball history. He once held a press conference as an eighth grader to announce his high school choice and was ranked No. 1 nationwide in his class as a freshman. We caught up with Esteban to talk about how he views the only place he’s ever known as home.
WHAT WAS IT LIKE GROWING UP IN COLUMBUS?:
I was born and raised here in Columbus, Ohio. I was raised on the south side, well, north side, excuse me. North side, around the Windsor Terrace area. Just growing up, my background was growing up playing basketball. I have a healthy, strong ... my blood, background was basketball. My father played, my uncle played for the Lakers. My other uncle, he tried out for the Lakers.
Growing up, I made a couple mistakes, hanging around the wrong people, but all in all, I feel like I grew up to become a decent human being. It was just coming up in the neighborhood, growing up, just trying to be a regular kid, trying to figure out what way to go, what to do in life.”
DO YOU FEEL LIKE YOU HAD AN INFLUENCE ON THE CURRENT PLAYERS WHO’VE MADE IT OUT OHIO?:
I feel like I played a heavy influence, as far as the younger kids that are coming up in the 2000s. The Sullingers, the Trey Burkes, I speak to them all the time and they tell me, “You know, man, we used to go sit down and watch your old video tapes before we played, just to get motivated.”
DO YOU SEE GROWTH IN SOME OF THE AREAS THAT YOU GREW UP?:
We still got a lot of growing to do, but we’re getting there. Columbus, Ohio is a beautiful place to be. It’s a beautiful place to raise children. It’s just that our culture, we have to uplift our culture more, because we have just too much violence going on in different areas, not just in our neighborhoods, but in other neighborhoods.
I loved my city from the moment I was born and I knew I was raised here. We just have to be able to do things collectively. It can’t be done individually, it has to be a group effort. And until we can get that group effort to keep growing and growing and get bigger and bigger, it’s just the problem that we going to have.
HOW DO YOU FEEL MADISON-USA FITS INTO THAT GROUP EFFORT?:
Madison-USA is a new store, a new face, so you have to do new things. A lot of these buildings around here have been here for years. You know what I mean? The building, 1219 N. High Street, was here but Madison-USA is here now. To be a new face in the city, to bring new things to the city, and bringing more youth to the city comes with a lot of vibrance, a lot of activity. Madison-USA can change the culture of how we view things and how we do things.