Humans of Hillsdale is an ongoing series spotlighting Hillsdale College student-athletes, spotlighting the people behind the uniforms.
Third in the series is Charger men's basketball point guard Connor Hill
WORDS: Calli Townsend
PHOTO: Carmen Botha
Connor Hill — Love of the game
Class of 2020 | Men's Basketball | Lenexa, Kansas
As the son of two Hillsdale alumni and the younger brother to Kelsey, a Kansas State University basketball player, Connor Hill has some pretty big steps to follow.
His dad, Kevin Hill, played basketball and football during his time as a Charger. He was a member of the 1981 basketball team that made it to the NAIA Final Four. His mom worked with the radio during her time here.
"One of my dad's basketball teams has a plaque in the gym so I see his face every day," Connor said. "There is a little bit of pressure, I'm not just going to college to better myself. I'm trying to make sure their name is still good. I want to make a good impression for myself and continue to do what they did."
Connor says he looks up to his dad because of his hard work ethic and his honest character. When his dad was 13 years old he moved away from home, got his own apartment and eventually worked his way through college.
"Where he came from and where he is now is pretty incredible," Connor said. "He is a great father, husband, and businessman. He may do something that makes my mom mad or messes up in business, but he never lies. And he always catches me when I fib."
His older sister Kelsey is also an inspiration. As a two-year-old boy, he would tag along to her AAU basketball tournaments. That was where he picked up his first basketball.
"I started dribbling a ball and I just kept dribbling," he said.
His parents put him in different basketball camps and in middle school, he got to join an AUU team of his own. His career continued from there. But Kelsey not only inspires Connor in his sport, but she is also a great support and friend to him.
"My mom and dad are obviously a huge influence, but I was so much younger than my sister, so she kind of took on this role of being like a sister, friend, and another mother," he said. "She's the most genuine person I know and she's so giving. She's always had that motherly instinct and now seeing that with her actual daughter is really inspiring."
Because of these influences and his basketball experience, Connor says he wants to continue to be involved in the sport after he graduates, but this time as a coach.
"I want to be a women's college basketball coach. My dad always coached girls AAU teams and my sister played," he said. "I don't think I've always been the best basketball player, but I know the game really well compared to others. I think I could make an impact in that."
He plans to continue to graduate school to study business and finance while being a graduate assistant coach.