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ODU's Wade returns from a long journey physically & mentally back to the court

The Richmond native missed the better part of two seasons due to a pair of major injuries.

NORFOLK, Va. — The great English author Rudyard Kipling who wrote the children's story "Jungle Book", was also a poet. One of his more famous poems "If" has a passage that could remind many of ODU guard Jason Wade. It says "If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster And treat those two impostors just the same".

"Seeing how he's battled everything he's gone through and where he is now makes me admire him", says Monarch head coach Jeff Jones.

Wade's long journey back to the court with ODU after nearly two years, was due to a pair of major injuries. The first happening in January of 2021 against Florida International when he collided with an FIU player. The result was reconstructive knee surgery and his season was over and getting back wasn't easy.

"This whole experience taught me to take nothing for granted and to be humble every step of the process", he said. With that kind of attitude, it was no surprised he was named the Monarchs team captain.

Wade had the full support of his family. His mom Linda and father Ronnie, a former ODU basketball great himself, has always been by his side. Their son would go through another setback when he tore his achillies tendon that sidelined him for the second time in less than a year. This time it was wearing on him mentally, but like before, he bounced back much to the relief of his teammates.

"He understands the vibes. He understands what we need to do to be at our best", says teammate Tyreek Scott-Grayson. "He isn't afraid to voice his opinion when we are not putting up to our standards".

With Wade now back, he admits he's not quite the same player he once was physically, but knows he's there mentally. For him, peace of mind is important.

"First you have to be open and able to listen", he says. "You have to be able to talk and express how you feel and what you're feeling. Then on the other side of that you have to be able to accept help".

Spoken like a true leader.

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