NASHVILLE --- Former Tennessee State men's basketball star Keron DeShields (Baltimore, Md.) signed his first professional contract to play the upcoming season with Latina Basket in Italy.
The guard, who is a native of Baltimore, Md., led TSU with 16.5 points per game during the 2015-16 season. A prolific scorer, DeShields poured in 1,110 career points during his collegiate career that included three seasons at the University of Montana before transferring to Tennessee State. He sat out the 2014-15 season at TSU per NCAA transfer rules and played his final season with TSU in 2015-16.
“Thank you to my TSU family for helping me along the way these past two years: my teammates, assistant coaches, teachers, administration, compliance and the media personnel for pushing me to be the best I can be and allowing me to be myself,” DeShields said. “I want to thank Dana Ford for letting me play my game and teaching me the importance of defense and AD Teresa Phillips and Associate AD Valencia Jordan for giving me a chance to be part of their athletic department and wear the TSU uniform with pride and dignity.”
For the Tigers, DeShields scored in double figures 27 times and had seven games with 20 or more points.
For his efforts at TSU, DeShields earned First Team All-Ohio Valley Conference honors and a place on the OVC All-Newcomer Team. He was also named NABC First Team All-District 19, BOXTOROW First Team All-America and TSU Male Athlete of the Year.
DeShields is set to begin preseason camp with his teammates in Italy on August 22 to get ready for the start of the season on Oct. 2.
“This first professional contract means a lot to me because I can now take care of my son’s wants and needs,” DeShields said. “It shows true resiliency on my end because the odds were stacked up against me my whole life coming from a city like Baltimore, but with my family, friends and mentors, I'm now a role model to our community. I can be a voice for the kid that comes from the bottom and works his way to the top and I'm not done yet.”