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Sam Springer Commits to the Air Force Academy

By Joe Mertens '15, 12/01/23, 11:30AM EST


The senior big man will continue his academic and basketball career at the Air Force Academy next fall and play in the Mountain West Conference.

OHIO CITY, Oh - After the 2022-23 Wildcat Basketball season ended, senior Sam Springer got to work, focusing on improving his skills on the court before the start of the 2023-24 season. Over the offseason, Springer blossomed, earning Division I interest from a successful summer playing AAU Basketball. In November, the Wildcat big man announced his commitment to the Air Force Academy. 

“I was unsure of the service academies at first because I don’t have a military background,” explains Springer. “After visiting the Navy and Air Force Academies, I enjoyed both schools, but I chose Air Force because it made more sense for my career, gaining experience while staying in the States.”

The 6’7” senior would see elevated time at Midwest Live for the Wildcats in Sandusky when Air Force became interested in Springer. “Air Force first saw me at Midwest Live and spoke to me afterward. I did workouts with them and in October, they offered me,” Springer says. “I am familiar with the altitude and the area. I enjoy skiing in Colorado Springs, and it perfectly fits me.”

Springer has been a Head Basketball Coach Cam Joyce’s varsity squad member for the last three seasons. Springer came off the bench for the Wildcats a season ago and has earned a starting role for the Cats this upcoming season. “He is a much more confident player coming into this season,” says Joyce. “It clicks for a kid at different points throughout their journey. Sam understands what is in front of him and becomes more consistent around the rim. He has put it all together. We always saw his potential, but he continued to develop and will now play in the Mountain West Conference.”

The Basketball Cats have had outstanding leadership over the last few seasons in names such as Henry Raynor ’21, Jonathan Effertz ’22 and Braydn Szczepaniak ’23, which left an impact on Springer who will look to fill that role as a leader this season.

“Henry was someone who I immediately looked up to as a younger player on how he approached the game. He was my position and he was a versatile wing that could do it all. He was also a great leader.” explains Springer. “Braydn was another player that led by example and was a hard worker at my position and of course, Jon. He was inspiring with his faith on and off the court and a great leader for the program.”

“Credit to him and his family and I am happy for him. I think he is just scratching the surface of the player he will be in the next couple of years,” Joyce says. “He is going to have a great college career.”

The Wildcats will tip-off the 2023-24 season on December 2 when they host the Medina Battling Bees and Springer has his focus on bringing the program its second State Championship. “First and foremost, I want to win a ring and I think we have the team this year to do that,” Springer says. “We have a tight-knit team, on and off the court. I am, of course, excited for the Tampa trip in December, but I want a ring.” 

What stands out for coach Joyce with Springer is his leadership and what he can do with the younger guys on the team. “Sam is vocal and is a great leader because he communicates with everyone. He understands this is his last season; he wants to ensure he takes full advantage of every practice and game,” Joyce explains. “He greatly understands what we are looking for on the floor and helping the younger guys.”