By Ned Bekavac
The trophy case at the Wood home might need some expanding down the road.
Guelph basketball star Mitchell Wood has committed to the Carleton Ravens, the perpetual powerhouse in Canadian university men’s basketball.
His older brother, Connor, is a second-year player there. Connor already has one national title to his name, winning it as a rookie last year with the Ottawa school that has won a stunning nine of the last 11 Canadian championships.
Mitchell is asked how much of a role his brother being on the team had in his own commitment to Carleton, and he responds in classic sibling rivalry fashion.
“It just happens to be that he’s there,” Mitchell says, with a laugh.
He adds: “Nah . . . we’re good friends.”
Mitchell, who stands about 6-foot-3 and a half and checks in at 190 pounds, is a combo guard who last season won the District 10 and CWOSSA AA titles with the Bishop Macdonell Celtics, a team that went on to win bronze at the OFSAA AA championship. This year, he is at the ACTS Athlete Institute in Orangeville, and he attends Orangeville District Secondary School.
When Carleton was recruiting Connor, they got a look at Mitchell as well, and so it began. This past summer, Mitchell joined the team for workouts for a few weeks.
He is keeping a level head regarding his expectations as a rookie on such a force of a team.
“I’m gonna try my best to get minutes, but it’s hard to get a lot of minutes in your first year,” Mitchell says.
He says he loves what he has seen in revered Carleton coach Dave Smart.
“He’s a real honest guy,” says Mitchell. “Off the court he’s really chill, and helps you get better, and on the court he always wants to push you and make sure you’re always going your hardest.”
Mitchell plans to live in residence for his first year of university, then will look to live with his bro come year two. The two have a younger brother, Lukas, who is currently playing for the Bishop Macdonell senior Celtics basketball team.
Mitchell is pumped to be joining the country’s top team next season.
He says: “It’s going to be a lot of fun, getting better, and . . .”
“And winning,” he adds with a smile.