BY: JOSE HERRERA and RICKY GUANDIQUE
Alumnus Jasen Powell (‘95, kinesiology) is preparing to enter his 22nd season with the Los Angeles Clippers where he now works as the team’s director of medical services and head athletic trainer. This is Powell’s second stint with the Clippers, initially interning for the team’s training staff for a year right after graduating from CPP.
Powell recently traveled with the Clippers to the NBA Bubble in Orlando, Florida, to close out the 2019-20 NBA season. He ensured the players were taking care of their body, eating right, and resting between games and practices.
Powell was born and raised in Oakland, California, where he attended Bishop O’Dowd High School and played for its basketball team. He grew up with a love for the game from a young age. While playing in the Bay Area, he crossed paths with future NBA stars such as Jason Kidd, Isaiah Rider and Gary Payton.
It was basketball that would bring Powell down to Southern California, where he earned an athletic scholarship to San Diego State University. Spending his first year of college there, he did not receive any playing time but learned a lot from then-SDSU Head Athletic Trainer Mark Haines.
“He was poised about being prepared,” recalled Powell. “As I look back at the position he had and how impactful he is to the student-athletes, that is something you can always give back on the job. That was my first taste of understanding what an athletic trainer was.”
Following his lone season with the SDSU Aztecs, Powell transferred to Merritt Community College back in Oakland for one season before transferring to CPP to play his final two years of NCAA eligibility for the Broncos. He averaged 11 points and four assists per game playing guard.
At CPP, Powell would receive guidance and support from mentors like former CPP men’s basketball Head Coaches Kevin Patterson and Tim Rapp.
“When you go through it, you don’t know how much they are impacting you,” said Powell. “I try to be that person now at 40 years old.”
Powell also enjoyed a successful tenure in the NFL, serving as an assistant athletic trainer for both the Atlanta Falcons in 1995 and the San Francisco 49ers from 1996 through 1999. Following his time in San Francisco, he returned to the Clippers to take the then-vacated head trainer position.
“Two weeks before the 1999 to 2000 NBA season, the position became available,” said Powell. “They called me and offered me the job, and I jumped at the opportunity.”
Powell credits his experience throughout his career for his longevity in the industry and reminds students that experience and hard work cannot be taught and cannot be taken away.
“My story cannot be rewritten for someone to duplicate,” said Powell. “To not have a master’s and to be in the NBA for over two decades. I’m an anomaly.”
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