“Nothing about David Roddy is common.” – CSU men’s basketball coach Niko Medved
The basketball game is over. A little boy works his way toward the court to catch a glimpse of his favorite player, perhaps ask for an autograph.
“Even just to get a high 5,” Colorado State University’s David Roddy recalls of going to high school, college or Minnesota Timberwolves games to see the top players when he was a boy. “That’s all I needed.”
Now, Roddy is the star attraction of the 24-4 Rams, who will find out Sunday evening when, where and which team they will play in the NCAA Tournament – even if they do not capture the conference tourney title.
The freshly crowned 2022 Mountain West coaches and media conference player of the year and Sports Illustrated All-American is always available for children – and others – who want a picture, a hello or an autograph.
“Just because I know what it feels like to be that kid,” Roddy said. “Whether it was me and my brother’s high school games or college games that I went to or anything, I was the kid. They see you as a hero. As long as I can make them happy, I am happy for them.”
Roddy’s teammate, roommate and CSU point guard Isaiah Stevens, a second-team all-league selection, admires his friend’s commitment.
“That’s the kind of guy he is,” Stevens said. “He’s very aware of the experience that we’re in right now. And so, every last kid, every last person, he’s engaging with everybody. He’s fully engulfing himself in this experience.”
Music, family, studying, the youngest of 5 boys
There are as many dimensions to Roddy himself as there are to his multi-faceted athletic skills.
Roddy played saxophone and was in choir growing up in Minnesota. “I enjoy singing, but I won’t sing in front of anybody,” he said, adding that Stevens has heard him belting out a tune in the shower. “I just love listening to music. Every time you see me around campus or something, I usually have the ear buds in. I love to learn about music as well.”
Roddy admits he sometimes has to push himself to study. So those video game battles with Stevens must end sometime.
“When you love basketball, you’ll do anything around it so you can play basketball,” Roddy
said, adding that balancing being a Division I athlete and school is daunting. “You’ve got to put the (video game) controller down, take the earbuds out and really focus in on homework. If you really love what you’re doing, you’ll do whatever it takes to continue that.”
Roddy was the youngest and the smallest of five boys – at least until middle school when he already stood 6 feet tall.
“It’s competitive,” he said. “Every day. Every second of life is competitive. There is always an argument somewhere. But it’s good. Lots of bonding.”
That bond also came in the form of one brother who was adopted.“Deon, we basically brought into our family,” Roddy said. “He was a football teammate since first grade and basically, he spent the night one night when I was in fifth grade and from then on, he never left.”
Roddy could have worn the gold and … brown
In another universe, Roddy could have played at Canvas Stadium as the quarterback of the Wyoming Cowboys. His high school offensive coordinator, Kevin Harris, played football for the Cowboys.
“Yeah, I keep thinking about that.” Roddy said. “I’d be in the brown and yellow.”
Or he could have worn the yellow and green of North Dakota State University. Or played hoops for the hometown Golden Gophers. Or been a Northwestern Wildcat.
How many CSU Rams basketball games did Roddy watch while growing up?
“I watched zero. To be completely honest, I did not hear about Colorado State until Coach Medved and them moved from Drake to here,” he said. “I knew their (logo); I had seen their symbol before like in NCAA football games, but never even thought of them.”
When the Rams entered the picture, then-assistant Dave Thorson was relentless, as was CSU assistant Ali Farokhmanesh. But Roddy’s parents also played a key role.
“They were more sold on Colorado State than I was in the beginning,” Roddy said of his mother Stacy and father Pierre Sr. “My family was very hands-on in my recruitment. They went on most of the visits, and they loved Colorado. I knew it would be the right place if I was comfortable there, no matter what.”
As a Minnesota native and Gophers alum, Medved knew all about Roddy’s three-sport abilities.
“He was a young man that was obviously a great athlete coming up, he was a multi-sport athlete as everybody knows – a guy that we had our radar on and we had an opportunity to see when he was younger,” he said. “So, he was on our radar for a while.”
The question always was whether Roddy would take his talents to a college football field, not a court. But the recruitment never stopped for the now 6-foot-6, 255-pound basketball player who will turn 21 the weekend of the Elite Eight.
“You really just get to try to know him, who is he, what makes him tick?” Medved said. “And right away, a guy like him, you could see … he is a perfect fit as an athlete, but what really stood out to me is he’s a perfect fit in every other way. It’s just who he is as a person and so, right away, there was a connection.”
Once Roddy settled on basketball, he picked CSU and the plan Medved had in mind for Roddy’s development as a player. Medved figured it was a program-changing commitment.
“You have this vision that we had for him as a player, a vision that we had for us as a program, and I think we really developed a real honest relationship,” Medved said. “And we really invested in him and he really appreciated that. And I think at the end of the day, that’s what won out.”
An uncommon work ethic
Other universities did not see what Roddy the basketball player (not the QB/discus/shot putter) could do in one sport.
“Probably some people didn’t see the athleticism and the talent – the upside he had for basketball,” Medved said. “He’s such a unique guy and you look at his size. I think some of those people underestimated his athleticism maybe and how quick he is.”
Even Former Minnesota (and current New Mexico) coach Richard Pitino said Roddy made the right college choice. “He’s a very unique player, very unique,” Pitino said. “He doesn’t have a lot of weaknesses. He’s a terrific college player. He can shoot. He’s a terrific passer. So yeah, there is not a lot of guys like him.”
Roddy’s year-by-year statistics illustrate the improvement in various parts of his game. Roddy has averaged 11.4, 15.9 and now 19.5 points per game. His assists have improved to 2.8 per game and his steals and blocks to 1.1 per game.
While his rebounds and free throw percentage may have dipped, he has improved his 3-point shooting from 19.5 percent to 27.8 percent
Roddy is a one-man brand
David Roddy is his own CEO, PR man and product.
Roddy is a junior in CSU’s College of Health and Human Sciences and is majoring in Human Development and Family Studies with a concentration in Leadership and Entrepreneurial Professions.
It is a good match for the college athlete in Colorado with likely the most Name, Image and Likeness (NIL) deals. “That’s really tailored into what I want to do,” Roddy said. “It’s been such a great opportunity –understanding how to market yourself, how to be your own manager and assistant and everything like that. I don’t have a team behind me or anything like that.”
It may seem like he does. Search around online and you can find Roddy attached to Krazy Karl’s Pizza, the “David Roddy Show” on KFKA, ENT Credit Union, Cameo, You@CSU, DNVR and Journey Payroll & HR. He said most of the deals revolve around appearances and social media.
“Having meetings with CEOs, with the right people, getting connected within the community has just been an amazing opportunity,” he said. “I’ve learned so much over the past few months. And this is just the wild, wild west (beginnings) of the NIL opportunities.”
to 46.2 percent. The NCAA men’s basketball official statistics website mandates players hit a certain number of 3s to qualify for 3-point percentage. The national leader through March 6? Howard’s Kyle Foster made 46.19 percent.
Other universities saw Roddy as a post player, or a football defensive end, or a Bowl Subdivision quarterback. It’s not common to have a basketball player capable of dunking on centers and making step-back 3s over guards in crunch time.
Said Medved: “Nothing about David Roddy is common.”