SAN DIEGO–When West Virginia’s Teddy Allen makes a free throw, he grabs the side of his neck each time.
What is the reason for this?
On the left side of Allen’s neck reads the name “Elise”.
So just who is Elise?
She is the mother of the 6-foot-5, 225-pound freshman and she passed away last year.
“She was both my parents until I was 16,” Allen told Omaha World-Herald staff writer Stu Pospisil last March. “It was the most devastating thing ever. There was nothing I could do. It happened fast. I was pretty down, but I knew I had to keep playing for Boys Town, keep on going for everything my teammates and I were working for.”
Losing a loved one is never easy, especially when it’s your parent. Elise meant everything to Teddy and she is the reason he is playing for the Mountaineers.
“That’s the reason I chose here really,” he said. “She was sick at the time. That was the only thing (school visit) that she was able to come on and she liked it. She just wanted me to follow the path that she was able to see instead of something that she really didn’t see.”
The Boys Town High School alum played a crucial role in WVU’s opening win of the NCAA Tournament over Murray State on Friday, coming off the bench and scoring 16 points.
The Mountaineers are shooting for their hopes and dreams of winning a National Championship this year. That is something that is very important for Allen to do for his late mother.
“It would mean everything,” he said. It would mean everything.”
And a piece of Elise will always live on in her son.
Cover Photo Credit: Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports