Photo by Stephen Kline

As members of the Mason Nation, we are committed to unconditionally support the green and gold as they take to the court two or three times a week. With that being said, there is much more to each game than a winning team and a losing one.

As our Patriots posted an impressive 84 points compared to a sub-par 58 by the Towson Tigers, one might solely see this game as men playing amongst boys. This win further extended the Patriots record to 10-0 at home and 16-5 overall. However, it was very clear that our beloved team played their hearts out until the very end, even with such a colossal lead.

I’d have to say that if it was not already clear before, senior Cam Long has clearly gone above and beyond to not only lead the team in points, steals, three pointers and minutes played, but also to emerge as an overall team leader. Once last year’s only senior Louis Birdsong graduated, it was obvious that Cam saw the leadership spot open up and he ran with it, starting with the team’s summer trip to Italy, all the way to the mid-season form where we are now. There are no signs, reasons, or excuses that Cam shouldn’t and won’t be the team leader all the way until the very last horn.

With less than 10 minutes to go in the game and his team up by nearly 30 points, Cam took a dive after a loose ball and passed off to an open teammate for a score. Minutes later, he was visually and verbally upset with his team’s defensive stand and would have been fed up with seeing another turnover on the next possession.

It is easy to say that Cam’s incredible determination, leadership and passion for the game is indescribable. But what is even more impressive, and unfortunately what we see less and less of in the country today, is his strong dislike for appraisal of individual achievements on the court. Each and every team has leaders emerge from the masses but it is rare to see the respect and honor that Cam’s teammates and coaches have to play and work with him on a day-to-day basis.

All four of George Mason University’s coaches clearly have the trust that Cam will lead his teammates by example on and off of the court. He is far more focused on team play, team winning and team cohesion than any 30-point game he may have or game winning shot at the buzzer. Now this is not to say that any other player is more or less “team oriented.”

However, it is clear that Cam has become the player on the court that we have been waiting to see, and even more of a class act off the court than we could ever imagine.