Jeremy Howard’s ultimate dream is to coach in the NBA.
Piece by piece, he’s been building a resume in recent years, and now his next installment will include the words National Basketball Association.
The Myrtle Beach native has been selected by the Philadelphia 76ers to serve as a coach during a pair of the franchise’s youth camps this summer. The first is from July 9-14 and the other will be at a date yet to determined in August.
“My future goal is to one day coach in the NBA, so this is pretty much putting me in the right direction as far as networking,” Howard said. “I believe that this opportunity right here has put my foot in the door on that platform. My goal for when I go up there is first of all to teach the youth the game of basketball, but second for me personally is to get my foot in the door as far as a job coming out of it – you know, with basketball operations or working with their team in some kind of way, even with the [Gatorade League] team.
“I just want to get my foot in the door and after that I can climb up the ladder. But first off is just doing things like this that I love to do as a teacher.”
Howard had previously spent time coaching at Myrtle Beach High, his alma mater, before spending last season as an assistant coach for both the men’s and women’s programs at NAIA Division II Brescia University in Owensboro, Ken., where he gained experience as a recruiter while also making more connections.
The job also presented him an opportunity to attend the Final Four in Dallas, where he again expanded his basketball network.
“It was like wow, people are really out there like this that have the same dream and same passion,” Howard said.
Howard has recently been putting out his resume in hopes of landing another job in the college ranks this fall.
“Right now a lot of coaches are switching positions so a lot of teams are looking for coaches,” he said. “So this is the perfect time for me to do what I was doing – put my resume out there, traveling, doing camps for other coaches, other programs – and just networking that way.
“I plan on being at a school by the fall.”
First, though, he’s getting ready for his job with the 76ers. He has plenty of experience doing youth camps, including five times serving in the camp NBA veteran and fellow Myrtle Beach native Ramon Sessions holds annually here. He credits the coaches from his upbringing for showing him the path, just as he is doing for today’s youth.
“Being surrounded by the talent in Myrtle Beach, you can either be good or you’re not. You have to literally work to be great at your craft. That’s what I want to give these kids as far as the game of basketball, but it’s not just about the game of basketball; it’s about life in general,” Howard said. “That’s my concept as far as coming with coaching. I’m going to push you, I’m going to push you, I’m going to push you because life’s going to push you. You either stand in the way or you let it take you over.
“… To me, it’s about life. I’m going to teach you those things. I’m going break you down and build you back up.”
Wherever the path ultimately leads him, he’s happy to be involved with the game he loves.
“I’m coming at it with 100 percent. I’m enthusiastic. I have the energy. That’s the thing: I love the game,” Howard said. “I love the life that’s been given to me and I just want to share it with the next generation.”