It didn’t take long for David Hinton to find his way back to a basketball court.
Hinton, a fifth-year senior who recently completed his eligibility with the VCU Men’s Basketball team, is in Anaheim, Calif. this week in conjunction with the Nike Elite Youth Basketball League (EYBL), a premier AAU basketball camp.
It’s the second major event in as many weeks for Hinton, who is serving as an event management intern for Position Sports, a sports marketing firm based out of Phoenix. Position Sports is closely tied to many of Nike’s major events, including Hinton’s first foray into event management, the Jordan Brand Classic at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. on April 13.
The Jordan Brand Classic is known for its annual national high school all-star game, but there are actually three games, including an international and regional all-star contest, staged the same day.
Hinton spent a week in New York City helping organizers stage the event. Hinton’s title, event management intern, is in many ways a catch-all for, “pretty much anything we can think of”.
“It wasn’t anything,” Hinton said. “It was everything.”
He says he did everything from the physical set-up and breakdown of the event to assisting with will call and ticketing issues. It also helped, he says, that he played at Barclays Center just a month ago with the Rams in the Atlantic 10 Championship. Not only was he familiar with the layout of the building, but it allowed him to give feedback on things such as, which lockerrooms were preferred and other information.
Workdays were often 16-18 hours and, on the day of the actual event, Hinton says he pulled a 20-hour day. But he’s not complaining.
“It was fun though, doing something I love, working with basketball,” said Hinton, a 6-foot-8 forward who appeared in 75 games in four seasons for VCU.
Hinton earned his bachelor’s degree in Homeland Security last spring, but is currently enrolled in VCU’s Center for Sport Leadership master’s program. His work with Position Sports will earn him three credit hours for a required externship, but more importantly, it’s fleshing out his resume. At a time when openings for government jobs could be scarce, it doesn’t hurt to have other options.
“I’m glad I’m going to have degrees in two different areas, whereas some people have a narrower focus,” he said. “I’m glad I have another degree I can fall back on.”
Plus, Hinton is a self-professed “sneakerhead” who owns more than 100 pairs of Nikes. Working this closely with the shoe and apparel giant is somewhat of a dream for the Winston-Salem, N.C. native.
Hinton’s internship will continue through the summer, and he’ll zigzag the country for different events, including another EYBL session April 26-28 in Hampton, Va.