Senior point guard BJ Standley is coming off a historic season in which he shot 44.8% from the three-point line and led the CPP men’s basketball team in overall assists. Standley was raised on the hardwood and has always been a student of the game.
Standley started playing at 3 years old and was heavily influenced by his father who was a high school basketball coach at McClymonds High School in Oakland, California — the same alma mater of NBA hall of famer Bill Russell.
“I went to a lot of his practices and games, so I think that’s what really got it started for me,” Standley said.
Around the age of 6, Standley noticed he was far more skilled at basketball than children his age. He attributes his skills to his dad, who helped mold and develop his son.
“He always made me play against guys that were 3 or 4 years older than me; I know that helped me,” said Standley.
Despite his father’s coaching history at McClymonds High School. Standley’s mother enrolled him at Saint Patrick-Saint Vincent High School to help continue to improve his game and receive the best educational opportunities possible.
In Standley’s high school senior year, his team won the state championship with a score of 59-46, finishing the season with the record of 28-7. After graduating he decided to attend Saint Martin’s University in Lacey, Washington. He played point guard there for two years but after his coach left the program, he entered his name into the transfer portal allowing any school to contact him. CPP Associate Head Coach Damion Hill reached out to Standley after discovering his name in the portal.
“It seemed like they were really interested in me. They were one of the first ones to come after me and it felt like they really wanted me here,” Standley said. “Their culture really appealed to me so that’s what made me to decide to come to Cal Poly.”
Despite Standley shooting so well from the three-point line last season, he hasn’t always classified himself as a shooter. He developed his jumper throughout his career and credits a lot of the success to the reassurance of his coaches and his work ethic.
“I was encouraged to keep shooting, they know I can shoot, that was a big thing for me,” said Standley. “In the summer it was me, Phoenix Shackelford and Tavian Henderson, we were in the gym sometimes three times a day putting in work.”
Heading into his senior season, Standley remains active, working out up to two times a day. He lifts weights, runs around the neighborhood with a weighted vest or goes to play at an outdoor court. Without an official announcement on the upcoming season returning to competition, Standley faces a decision: to stay at CPP and play his last season next year if the upcoming season is canceled or move on and begin his professional career.
“I would definitely want to come back and play another year,” Standley said. “I want to finish my collegiate career.”