You hear about Andrew Del Piero’s size – 7-foot-2, 286 pounds – you think, “He must be a basketball player.” You’d be right (he’ll suit up for LSU this coming season), but not until recently – because before this year, he played something much different for LSU: tuba.
He’s making the very, very big transition now after making the team during walk-on tryouts (“I’d never know unless I tried”). Coach Trent Johnson is understandably intrigued by adding someone with that kind of size out of nowhere:
“Andrew is a young man that hasn’t played a lot, but we knew of him last year. Anytime you see a guy in the band walking along with that size, you’re like ‘Oh my goodness.'”
“Anytime?” Has Johnson seen this happen more than once? If he has, that’s completely awesome, but it seems like the odds are against it. Del Piero does have some basketball experience – from freshman year in high school. Plus his father played at Dartmouth, but freshman basketball to major college basketball is quite the leap.
And of course, that leap won’t be easy. He said himself he has to work on conditioning so he can run the floor, and one would have to imagine his skills are extremely raw. But like the saying goes, you can’t teach height, and again…7-foot-2.
What’s especially fun is how on Del Piero’s player bio page, they mention his all-state band selections. With any luck, he’ll eventually work his way into contributing to the team, because like this writeup says, “Even among walk-ons with feel-good stories, his is better than most.”
Video (via that same writeup) of him playing tuba with LSU’s marching band below. Let’s just say you will not have a difficult time figuring out which one is Del Piero.
H/T Brad Locke