Episode 76: Someone You Need To Know NOW

“Future shining so bright, Cory needs a second pair of Ray Bans” 

“There’s a crossroad for everybody, some people just hit it later in life”

“Going through some type of adversity is necessary for growth”

“I should get one of those Staples buttons that just say ‘shut the fuck up'”


  • Welcome Back With SPECIAL GUEST, JAKE WILEY: 00:30
  • Jake Wiley’s Story: 3:20
  • Using Hardship as an Advantage: 11:30
  • Coming Back From Being Burnt Out: 16:55
  • Adversity Breeds Character: 21:30
  • Walking Onto the Court As An NBA Player: 36:30
  • Closing Remarks: 44:40


Jake played every sport in high school then started playing basketball at Montana where he would eventually quit because he became burnt out. He tried his hand at track and football, though he made both teams he found himself drawn to basketball yet again. When he decided to return to basketball he played NAIA. This is where he began to really grind and win 2 championships and become an All American. He then re-entered NCAA Div. 1 basketball as a graduate student at Eastern Washington University, where he had an incredible year and made it into the NBA. Quite the turnaround for a kid who spent his freshman year of high school in the streets rather than in class.

Jake’s father was a heavy alcoholic who was addicted to prescription drugs and was seldom present in Jake’s life. During his childhood he took his father’s absence personal but as he aged he came to see that his father had an addiction that was stronger than himself, which pulled him away from Jake. Especially after the passing of his father he came to the realization that his dad really did love him.

All the negative and positive experiences that you have throughout your life are what mold you into the person you eventually become. No one great, became that way without suffering hardship. Without that hardship it is unlikely they would have ever achieved what they went on to do. For example, the passing of Jake’s dad gave him the perspective that life can end at any moment so why not go all in on what you want. When he decided to quit basketball and try out for track and football people thought he was crazy. Jake knew that he had to do what was going to make him happy. After burning out of basketball, why wouldn’t he go and try a new sport? Many people would just resolve to finish their four years of basketball and be miserable but Jake took action. He decided to be happier and pursue what seemed to be a long shot. He had the courage to follow his path rather than the one that had been laid out for him. You can’t be so concerned with what people think. When Jake quit basketball he had to deal with a lot of backlash from peers bashing him for following his path. The fact that he was able to say “I don’t give a damn” enabled him to succeed everywhere he went.

Absence makes the heart grow fonder. After taking some serious time off, Jake realized how much he missed playing basketball. Then he began to shoot around by himself after workouts, realizing ‘man.. the ball feels good’. Eventually it all clicked where he knew it was time to come back. The 6 months off acted as a reset of his passion. He was able to rediscover his love for the game of basketball.

It is difficult or nearly impossible for people to develop the necessary personality traits for success, especially at a young age without experiencing adversity. To grow up fast and become a man, as Jake did, his hardships were essential to his growth as a person. It does make it more difficult to relate to many people his age, 23. Many people that age have not experienced hardship or adversity, therefore they have a different mindset. Not that this is their fault, its just the way it is. Eventually people will experience hardship and that is what molds people into real, wise, adults.

Jake realized that he was about to fail out of high school and knew that he wanted to play basketball so he made the decision to move. There weren’t any travel teams in that area, there was only pickup games. After failing out of high school there weren’t many options for him to go play anywhere so his dad called schools in Washington and got him in. He went with the intention of both he and his dad taking this opportunity to turn their lives around. For awhile, it worked and the drinking/drugs stopped but then it all came back around. Once the alcohol came back into his life, his job was gone, the relationship between he and Jake became more and more strained. The drugs and alcohol eventually led to his dad attempting suicide and was saved by a neighbor. After this attempt, things spiraled even further out of control before eventually Jake’s father passed away. After going through all that, competing in the NBA is a cakewalk. There are so many people who complain about minutia, when they should really be thankful for what they have now. As Jake explains, people in the NBA complaining about travel schedules or the media, all that is nothing compared to what he went through. So he is grateful for every game

Every pro guy, is what have you done for me lately. Jake’s contract is a two way deal where any team can call you up from the roster for 45 days or they are assigned to the G league team. So if he does not perform then he can be sent down into what is essentially the NBA minor leagues. In order to solidify his spot he is taking the mentality that he is going to put in more effort than anyone else. You have to win every sprint in practice, every rebound you have to go up and get it. A lot of guys get caught up in the fact that they aren’t playing many minutes. This negative attitude is picked up on by the teammates and coaches, if you aren’t grateful to be there or they feel like you don’t fit the culture then the organization will easily replace you.



Leave a Reply