By Noah Allison–
Every team needs a leader, a figurehead that the players can turn to and the coaches can trust in. A player who has been there, done that, but sure as heck isn’t finished yet. The 2012-2013 Louisville Cardinals have that, and it comes in the form of senior team captain Peyton Siva.
Siva leads the Cardinals storming back off a final four appearance last season. A deep and talented team filled with plenty of youth, as the only starting senior, and at point guard, it was only natural for Siva to take responsibility of trying to get the Cards back.
“I just want us to go hard and get back to where we were last year, only make it one game further,” Siva said.
Siva was named preseason first team All-American and was named Big East preseason Player of the Year. He can get the job done on all areas of the court: getting steals, scoring points and, in true point guard fashion, spreading out assists. Last season, his 211 assists were second highest ever for a single U of L season. His 449 career assists, before the start of the 2012-13 season, rank eighth all time at U of L.
The Seattle, Washington, native didn’t start playing basketball until his sixthgrade year, and back then the now six-foot point guard played center. But his years of growth and maturity culminate here in his senior year at U of L. Siva has a rare, selfless talent that he uses to make the whole team thrive on the floor together. He is constantly working to improve the offense and make it more fluid.
“We have a lot of room for improvement, I think we have to do a lot better at communicating and talking more,” Siva said.
The vocal player on the court has gotten use to talking from having reporters enclosing him in his locker after every press conference. The life of a super-talented team captain brings a lot of attention to the senior in college.
“I’m team captain, so it means I have to answer a lot questions,” Siva said. “I take everything for my team, they trust me to be captain so they trust me to speak.”
Siva was even featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated’s annual college basketball preview issue.
The matured player has the role of both leading his team and bringing them along to grow as both teammates and human beings.
“Don’t get frustrated, everything is going to happen for a reason. There are going to be times when you don’t get the pass you wanted or things are just going wrong, but you have to keep your confidence up, and keep playing hard. Things are going to happen for a reason, you just have to keep your head up,” Siva said.
Each player on the team is a necessity, and they all play their own special part. But Siva brings an un-teachable quality to the team that nobody else can. All he can do is lead by example and let his class and composure wear off on the rest of the team.
Despite all the focus on No. 2 Louisville and the attention that Siva receives on a daily basis, he still manages to keep his senior year and the basketball season in perspective.
“I don’t feel like we have any pressure at all, what do we have to live up to? We are just taking it one game at a time and continuing to play,” Siva said.
Photo: Austin Lassell/The Louisville Cardinal