Former NBA guard and high school All-American Chris Herren spoke to over 350 Central Connecticut State University students on Tuesday night, February 26 on the CCSU campus. Herren, whose struggles with drug addiction were chronicled in the book Basketball Junkie told his life story to the captivated crowd, consisting mostly of Blue Devil student-athletes.
"Chris brought a powerful message to campus and we were excited to have him address our student-athletes," Director of Athletics Paul Schlickmann said following the event. "Chris relayed his story in a forthcoming manner, and I know everyone in attendance appreciated his candor. His story of perseverance is inspiring while his message that nobody is exempt from the potential dangers of substance abuse hits you right between the eyes. I believe our student-athletes got both messages in a meaningful way. Their feedback has been very enthusiastic and positive."
Herren is a native of Fall River, MA, and played high school basketball at Durfee High School. He went on to Boston College and eventually landed at Fresno State where he had a successful career for the Bulldogs.
Herren was drafted the 2nd round of the 1999 NBA Draft and played for the Denver Nuggets and eventually the Boston Celtics in 2000. After his time with the Celtics, Herren continued his basketball career overseas.
Herren struggled with substance abuse for much of his basketball career. Now alcohol and drug free since August 1, 2008, Chris has refocused his life to put his sobriety and family above all else. Chris's memoir, Basketball Junkie, was released in May of 2011 and chronicles his struggles with addiction and his journey on and off the court. He is also the subject an ESPN Films documentary Unguarded.
To support this vision, Chris founded The Herren Project, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing assistance to families affected by addiction, and launched Project Purple, a national anti-substance abuse campaign encouraging people of all ages to stand up to drugs and alcohol.
LEARN MORE ABOUT CHRIS HERREN AND PROJECT PURPLE HERE