By Jordan Malkin
KNGSTON, R.I. - Many players choose a jersey number based off of professionals that have worn the number in the past. However, for Rhode Island's Christion Thompson, the choice of the number 25, is much more unique.
When Thompson was 4-years-old, his father went to Walmart, late at night, to buy a few things. Unfortunately, he was involved in a car accident, and never made it home to his family. When the police arrived on the scene, they noticed three basketballs in the back seat of the car. This stuck out to Thompson quite a bit. He felt like his dad would've been very proud of him if he took basketball seriously as he grew up.
During rough times throughout his basketball career, Thompson would use this story as motivation. All of his hard work is dedicated to his family, as well as his girlfriend. Thompson
keeps them in the back of his mind every day as a constant reminder for why he lives for the sport. Thompson wears the jersey number 25, in remembrance of his father, who was born on July 25.
In recent years, Rhode Island basketball has experienced significant success, which Thompson has been a key part of. His brand of high-effort basketball on and off the court embodies what the program has been about for several years.
The redshirt junior from Baton Rouge, La. has had a wonderful journey that led him to the Kingston campus. Thompson attended Dutchtown High School from his freshman through junior years, in order to play football. Fortunately for the Rams, he shifted his focus to basketball after his freshman year of high school, and from that point on, a star was being created. He later decided to transfer to Madison prep, in Baton Rouge, La. where he led his team to a championship season with a 31-0 record.
Thompson fell in love with Rhode Island on his first official visit.
"The family atmosphere they showed me when I got here was just incredible," Thompson said. "With guys like Hassan Martin, Jared Terrell, Jarvis Garrett, Stanford Robinson, and E.C. Matthews, I felt like they really had my back the second I stepped on campus."
Thompson found the move to the Ocean State was a good opportunity, considering "home isn't the safest place to be."
Thompson has an unlimited amount of amazing memories created at URI. His favorite memory since being at school took place on Nov. 19, 2016 when the unranked Rams beat No. 18 Cincinnati, 76-71. Another memory took place on Dec 16. of this past year, when the Rams overtook West Virginia 83-70, a game in which Thompson had 12 points and eight rebounds.
During the 2017-18 season, Thompson was unable to participate, due to a torn patella tendon, which required a surgery, and a five-month recovery period. Of course missing the season was quite disappointing, however there was a silver lining.
Thompson became more interested in becoming a strength and conditioning coach when he graduates with his Kinesiology degree. Other career paths that he might persue include life coaching, opening his own gym or being a strength coach. He also plans to continue donating sneakers to the Boys and Girls Club, which he has done throughout his career. Eventually, Thompson wants to create his own shoe donation foundation.