Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Irish Eyes Are Smiling His College out of Way, Carmody Can Have Fun

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Irish Eyes Are Smiling His College out of Way, Carmody Can Have Fun

Article excerpt

The new Robby Carmody has shed a little more than 20 pounds since last season. It was a wanted weight loss for the 6-foot-4, 195-pound star guard at Mars High School.

But more weight has been lifted off Carmody's shoulders for this season and it has nothing to do with pounds. It was about a ton of pressure that vanished when Carmody signed that letter of intent last month to play college basketball at Notre Dame.

Numerous colleges had wanted Carmody, one of the most heavily recruited players in the WPIAL over the past decade. For Carmody, there is no more worrying about what college coach is watching in the stands. No more playing for scholarships. No more wondering about his future. Meet the new Robby Carmody, the one who can simply play basketball - and worry about winning.

"I feel a little bit more care-free," said Carmody. "The college decision never bothered me during games. It was just leading up to games and it was something I always had in the back of my mind. I needed to make a decision, just so I could focus on basketball."

And he doesn't need GPS to see where he wants to go. All sights are set on Petersen Events Center that first week in March. That's when teams win big WPIAL trophies and players get gold medals . We have sent men to the moon, but no WPIAL basketball championship trophy has ever gone to Mars.

"I want to get that first WPIAL championship for Mars," Carmody said. "I want to leave a legacy that younger kids can build off. The best way to do that is to win a championship."

The old Carmody was pretty darn good. He was all-state and a Post-Gazette Fabulous 5 selection. As a junior, he averaged 26.2 points, 12.7 rebounds, 4.8 assists and shot 65 percent from the field. He has 1,456 career points.

But the new Carmody is jumping higher, which is hard to believe because he already had impressive "hops." He said he feels like he is shooting better and might even be a little quicker. And his father, who also happens to be his coach, sees a difference in his son.

"Maybe the best way for me to say this is when he verbally committed to Notre Dame this summer, my wife and I got our son back," said Rob Carmody the coach. "All that other stuff kind of fell away.

"I think the past two years, every time he would step onto the court or go to a workout, he would have this thing hanging over his head like who is watching and what are they thinking of me. That can be hard at times, because you're trying to manage that, but also at the same time be a kid and enjoy life a little. He has more of his smile back. I think he has had so much fun so far in his senior year. He has done stuff I know he wouldn't have done if this college decision was still hanging over his head."

Young Rob dressed up as Star Wars character Chewbacca for every Mars football game and sat in the student section. …

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