Former Big 12 Star is Back Playing at the Rec

5 years 5 months 2 weeks ago May 08, 2011 May 8, 2011 Sunday, May 08 2011 Sunday, May 08, 2011 9:12:00 PM CDT in Tiger Talk

COLUMBIA - Going from the Big 12 Championship court to the rec court could be hard for any player, but former Tiger Keith Ramsey is taking it in stride.

He's having a great time, but his opponents, not so much.

Keith Ramsey went from living on the biggest court of the Big 12 to playing at the rec. This after his college eligibility expired.

"I just come out here and have fun and come out here and stay in shape. I see it as a game and playing pick up, but it's good playing with refs and stuff and it keeps me up and down so I won't stay outta shape," Ramsey said.

The rec is where some look to make a name for themselves, but what if you already have one. Are you really just taking advantage?

"I try not to. My team loves playing with me. I'm not selfish at all. I pass the ball. Some guys get carried away with it. I honestly just let them talk. Im just trying to have fun," Ramsey said.

And of course, his teammates love playing with him, and his advantage.

"It's just cool to see someone that athletic on the floor as you doing some things that you know you couldn't do," teammate Will Nixon said.

"We've had teams get mad. I mean, it's all fun before the game. 'Aww they got Keith Ramsey.' It's a definite advantage. People really hate it. To me, it is like playing with somebody in the NBA, especially with the talent that you have out there. He's dunking. You just throw it up near the rim he'll get it. He's so much better than everyone else out here," teammate Alex Underwood said.

"He's nice. A regular guy honestly. I didn't know him obviously to the level that I do now he comes across as a real genuine nice guy to me,"

"When someone talks smack to me without Keither I'm like all right, I'm gonna go even harder, but then you hear someone say something to Keith and you're like I don't know know what he's thinking honestly," teammate Lee Kincheloe said.

And honestly, sportsmanship is something important to Keith as well. After one game earlier in the rec-league season, one opponent didn't want to shake his hand. That bothered him

"It did. It's all fun of course you can't take everything on the court seriously. If I see I can get to you I'm going to keep doing it if you let me. I mean, I was pretty upset. Shake my hand man, don't have bad sportsmanship. I'm all about sportsmanship," Ramsey said.

Keith's all about the game as well. He's already played some pro ball in Europe, but he came back to Mizzou for one reason.

"I came back to get my degree. I wanted my degree in case something ever happened to me, I would always have something to fall back on. Part of me getting my degree is so that I can get into coaching," Ramsey said.

"Nobody in my family has ever gotten a college degree. I wanted to be the first one in our family to get a bachelor's," Ramsey said.

And when he walks across the stage...

"That's going to be the happiest day of my life. I will feel like I have accomplished a lot in my life," Ramsey said.

 And with his experience, his talent, his sportsmanship, one thing stands out:

"I'm not no bigger than anyone else. Even at 6'8", I'm not bigger than anyone else," Ramsey said.

Besides a professional playing career, Ramsey hopes to eventually coach basketball as well.

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