First impressions have never been a problem for Dream Vision point guard Myles Franklin.
At six-feet, four-inches, shoulders back and a huge smile plastered across his face, Franklin is the type to light up a room the second he enters.
But it’s not until Franklin speaks that the full realization of just how well-rounded, humble and friendly the young man is hits home.
Very few Division I athletes have their heads on quite as straight as Franklin, but when they do come around every so often, they all seem to have one thing in common: A great family working hard to support them from the background.
For Franklin, who verbally committed to Northeastern University in Boston this week, basketball is, quite literally, family.
The son of one of the top basketball trainers on the West Coast, and older brother to an elite Division I recruit, Franklin eats, sleeps and breathes basketball.
“I’m blessed to have a great family,” Franklin said. “They support me so much. My dad (Kenny Franklin) is the toughest on me, nothing is a given. I’ve had to work very hard, and be blessed, to be in this position.”
Kenny Franklin, who serves as Dream Vision’s Director of Player Development, is the program’s head trainer, and has coached Myles’ AAU teams throughout his journey from 8th grade to his senior year at Villa Park High School.
Franklin says just as his father’s toughness pulls the best out of him on and off the court, so too does he expect the best out of his younger brother, Julien.
“My little bro is my best friend,” Franklin said. “He is going to be a great player. I’m just trying to show him the ropes and make him better than me.”
Julien, whose 15U Dream Vision squad collected four championships and finished No. 7 in the country last season, has several offers already, including New Mexico.
“I get on him,” Franklin said. “He will get mad or whatever, but he know that I’m just testing him and making sure he is super polished.”
While his dad can be hard as nails on the court, Franklin’s mom offers a lighter touch off of it.
“My mom is very supportive,” Franklin said. “I can come to her for everything.”
Franklin credits his family as a big part of why he is where he is today, and that family extends, of course, to longtime friend and Dream Vision teammate Evan Battey, who committed to Colorado earlier this offseason.
Teammates at Villa Park as well, Battey and Franklin were on the same team in 4th grade and have been best friends ever since.
“I consider him a brother,” Franklin said.
Which is why it will be a little weird a year from now when the two will be playing for different teams for the first time in a lifetime.
“This year, we just have to enjoy everything,” Franklin said. “He is going to eat at Colorado. We will have time to hang out when he makes it to the league.”
The future may be just as bright for Franklin, on the basketball court, and off, as Northeastern is renowned on multiple levels for developing its talent.
Ninety-percent of Northeastern undergrads spend time in the workforce prior to graduation, and the college is No. 1 in the country in turning out workforce-ready graduates.
Franklin hasn’t decided on a major yet but is considering medical, marketing or criminal justice, and said Northeastern’s academic reputation, as well as its location in the center of a bustling city were major factors in his decision.
“It’s in the heart of Boston,” Franklin said. “I love that there are so many other colleges surrounding it. You could meet a new friend from a different school every day if you wanted to.”
Elated about the prospect of joining Northeastern’s basketball program, headed by Bill Coen, Franklin said the school’s reputation for developing players was very important to him.
“They made me feel like I was already part of the team,” Franklin said. “I feel like they really have faith in me as a player and can take my game to the next level. Coach Coen understands the game and knows a lot of people in the basketball world.”
Franklin feels his skill-set fits in well with Northeastern’s offense.
“A lot of ball-screens,” Franklin said. “It’s a fast-moving, read-and-react offense. They see me as point, but in their offense, any guard has the option to attack.”
Before Franklin heads to Boston, however, there is still unfinished business yet to be accomplished under head coach Kevin Reynolds at Villa Park.
“Villa Park has been amazing,” Franklin said. “Coach Reynolds knows how to push me as a player, and how to push the team as a group. There is a long track-record of great players coming out of Villa Park.
“I want to be one of those players that people talk about.”
To contact Brandon Petersen, e-mail email@example.com.