The spacious area inside Franklin Community High School devoted to honoring accomplished athletes and teams of yesteryear will likely in time include Nick King.
A two-sport athlete, the senior plays tonight in the final Mid-State Conference basketball game of his career when the Grizzly Cubs travel to Plainfield.
Averaging 10.1 points and 5.4 rebounds, the 6-foot-6, 195-pound forward’s mission at this juncture is helping Franklin (13-5) reclaim some lost momentum after dropping its past two games.
Regardless of how the coming weeks play out, King’s contributions to his school extend beyond baseline 3-pointers and setting the ideal screen.
King is liked. Respected. A leader.
He’s also a 3.64 grade-point-average student who at this time next year will be a freshman at the University of Indianapolis majoring in occupational therapy.
“There’s absolutely nothing fake about the kid whatsoever. You talk to kids, talk to teachers, talk to administrators, talk to cafeteria workers, they all say the same thing, and that’s that Nick is a genuine gentleman,” second-year Franklin basketball coach Jerry Bomholt. “He works hard at his grades and is always very polite.
“He leaves the right impression on people and is just a pleasure to coach.”
A receiver/defensive back for Franklin’s varsity football team, King wasn’t always the lean version of himself people see today.
“I was kind of heavy when I was younger, so in football I played offensive line as a fifth- and sixth-grader and on the defensive line in seventh grade,” King said. “I didn’t move to wide receiver until eighth grade.”
King’s consistency in the classroom was tested his sophomore year when he brought home a “C” in Algebra II.
“I’ll never forget that. It was my first ‘C’ in high school, and I was really mad at myself,” he said. “I promised myself I would work hard so that it never happened again.”
King’s varsity football career spanned the 2011, 2012 and 2013 seasons. He’ll graduate having lettered all four years in basketball.
As for his post-high school plans, King has given thought to possibly trying to walk on to the University of Indianapolis men’s basketball team in the fall.
At the same time, King is completely at peace with the possibility that what transpires in March will signal the end of his career in organized athletics.
“I’m probably not going to be in the NBA,” he said with a laugh. “I think it’s time to turn the page and just get ready for my career in the health care field so I can help people.”
Bomholt has no doubt he will.