28 Jun Jacob Formosa – Relentless
Jacob Formosa Relentless
As a member of the AUBD’s first “young guns” group (I think he was 11 at the time) Jacob Formosa has literally been with us since he was a child. One thing that has always stuck about him is his relentlessness and competitive spirit. Never afraid to fail and willing to take on any challenge, Jacob has been a fixture in our platform and gone through every AUBD program. His quiet confidence and score first mentality has put him the position to become a mainstay on the international level for the Maltese National team in FIBA for many years to come. We are so happy for Jacob and proud to say that he is a part of the AUBD family!
“AUBD has meant to me a chance to work with and get to know basketball players from around the world. It’s also a great way to get into the American college system with the contacts and coaches that AUBD know and have.”
The Baby Gator – Jacob Formosa
I first saw Jacob as 10 year old while I was coaching the U18 Altona Gators boys in 2009. At the time this team was the talk of the club. That year we won the Met 1 title and won 20+ games in a row. Whilst I had some talented players on my team, there was this young kid that at the club that used to always catch my eye. He ended up coming to a holiday basketball camp I held at Altona and that’s when I got to see Jacob in full effect. Much like now…Jacob GOT UP SHOTS! In the 2 day camp, he had to take about 50 – 60 shots in game time…at 10 years old! It wasn’t like they were bad shots either…he just looked like he was supposed to shoot that much. He was (and still is) unconscious when it comes to shot attempts make or miss.
AUBD Young Guns
The first couple years of AUBD, our membership base was boys aged 15 – 18. There wasn’t a particular other than there was a group of 15 – 18 year olds that wanted to train with us initially. With those early groups we did notice that a lot of these older kids had formed some bad basketball habits. We then got the idea to bring a younger group 10 – 12 that we could mould before some of those bad habits started to form. We recruited 10 young kids from across Melbourne and Jacob was at the top of the list. For the most part all these kids were hand selected by our coaches so they could all play. Most of the kids were guards (maybe 8 out of 10). You’ve never seen so many 11 – 13 year olds crossing each other up and getting buckets in the same place anywhere. Whilst all the kids could play, Jacob Formosa, Lachlan Anthony & Michael Hatherley were definitely standouts. We affectionately referred to this group as the “young guns”. Jacob and the rest of the young guns effectively paved the way for AUBD’s youth movement.
Jacob’s First US Tour
Jacob successfully navigated his way through the gruelling gauntlet of AUBD programs over the next few years and ended up going on his first Tour USA with AUBD. Boy did he struggle mightily. Whilst Jacob has never been shy about shooting, developing into a floor general has always been a work in progress. This was so very evident on this particular tour. At one point Jacob was leading the WHOLE United States in turnovers (he was averaging 10+ a game). To his credit, most kids his age (15 at the time) would have rolled up into a ball and completely regressed. Jacob didn’t. We continued to put him on the floor regardless of his turnovers and he learned. He took it on the chin like a champ…chalked it up to experience and kept playing with that competitive spirit that has come to define him. (His turnovers had no impact on shot attempts…he was still unconscious).
Jacob Formosa & The International Stage
We witnessed Jacob grow up before our eyes on his first US Tour. This steep learning curve set the wheel’s in motion for his ascent into the into the stratosphere. He toured with us 2 more times after that first tour and was great every time. He started to become a floor general without sacrificing his shot attempts. This mastery in AUBD and in the Big V propelled him into the Maltese junior national teams and now in the Senior team. As I write this article, Jacob is in San Marino playing in the FIBA European Championships for Small Countries.
We are so proud of Jacob and happy that he is furthering his career. He is and will always be apart of the AUBD family. We wish Jacob and his family all the best (his younger brothers, Nick & Alex, both AUBD members are playing for Malta too)! I’d like to end this by saying keep shooting, Jake! (He’s averaging 12 attempts in 25 mins)