Pitt has had a disappointing season, but one of their bright spots early in the season was Tray Woodall. Woodall is a senior guard from Brooklyn who has averaged 12 points and six assists per game. He played extremely well in the non-conference, but then he missed 11 games with an abdominal injury and saw the team go 5-6 without him.
Woodall was the subject of a lengthy profile in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Sunday that talked about his background. One revelation was that he sold drugs at an extremely young age.
Woodall’s mother was a drugs and alcohol addict, so Tray began selling drugs when he was 12 to support himself.
“Me and my sister had to sell drugs,” Woodall says. “What other outlet did I have? I couldn’t get a regular job. I was in fifth grade.”
Tray’s sister is three years older than him and had to support a one-year-old child. He stopped going to school except to eat the free lunches and was held back.
When he was 13, his mother moved the family to New Jersey, and Tray got even deeper into the drug game.
“Before, it was small stuff, nickel and dime bags,” Tray’s sister Shataya says. “In Jersey, we could sell more stuff for a bigger amount.”
Woodall eventually got into traveling basketball and enrolled at Bob Hurley Sr.’s St. Anthony High in Jersey City, N.J. where he flourished. He went to Pitt to follow point guards Levance Fields and Brandin Knight and he’s on track to graduate with a sociology degree in spring.
Even though we don’t condone drugs and selling them, it’s understandable why Woodall did it. When you’re that young, you’ll do anything to survive. Credit Tray for changing his life and becoming a college student.
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