Basketball: DV vs Highland

ThunderÕs Mason Ford (10) jumps and passes the ball during the basketball game between Desert Vista Thunder and Highland Hawks on Thursday, Dec. 12, 2013.

David Jolkovski/AFN

Seeing Todd Ford at a basketball game was just an odd sight.

One of the first coaches that I made a connection with when I moved to Arizona in 2004 was Ford, who was running a very successful wrestling program at Desert Vista at the time.

Although he is no longer coaching the Thunder he is still very involved with the wrestling and whenever we see each other we’d talk about what’s going on within the sport.

So when I was at Mountain Pointe the other night for the Desert Vista basketball game, it was just weird seeing him at the top of the bleachers filming the action.

I remember him telling me a few years ago that his son Mason chose basketball over wrestling, but for whatever reason it didn’t click that the Mason Ford who wears No. 10 for the Thunder was his son.

Until the other day and then I started wondering what a difficult decision it could be for Mason to give up the sport his dad has been involved with for about 35 years to play the sport that most wrestlers despise.

“It was tough but basketball has always been my first love,” Mason, a senior, said. “I started wrestling when I was 5 then took a break and picked it back up in 7th grade at Anderson Junior High and I won my conference.”

Ford, who is averaging 6.1 points and 2.3 assists for Desert Vista, said having the talk was made easier by his dad.

“I did take his feelings into consideration but he told me to do what makes me happy,” Mason said. “I honestly do miss wrestling and I have always said if it were in a different season I would no doubt wrestle.”

While there are some fathers who would press the issue, it isn’t surprising to hear Todd was supportive.

“He did both when they were different seasons,” he said. “He had some (wrestling) ability but it was clear he was heading toward basketball. I told him he had to what made him happy and he’s doing what he loves and that’s all that matters.”

Contact writer: (480) 898-7915 or Follow him on Twitter @JSkodaAFN.

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