NAIA Player Spotlight: Ed Carter III – Xavier Univ of Louisiana
Xavier (LA) is set up to have a great 2019-20 season. They return two All-Americans in William Loyd and Rayshawn Mart, who were featured in our “The Best Returning Duos in NAIA” post. As good of a duo as they are, there is a third guy to watch for next season in Ed Carter III. The 6’1 Guard averaged 10 points, 3 rebounds, and 3 assists per game as a Sophomore, while also setting the school record for most 3’s in a game with EIGHT!!
However, Eds journey to Xavier (LA) wasn’t the easiest one. Being from Detroit, he decided to attend NCAA D1 Detroit Mercy out of high school. He thought that it would give him a chance to stay close to home, and give himself a chance to play in front of family and friends. It didn’t work out for Ed there. After multiple coaching changes, and not knowing if he fit into the new system, Ed decided that he needed a change. He wasn’t as concerned with D1, nor staying close to home. He wanted the best fit, and opportunity to play.
In came Xavier (LA), and the coaching staff at XULA. Ed had never been to New Orleans, but he had heard good things about XULA. From the beginning, Coach Alfred Williams and staff told Ed that nothing would be given to him. That he would have to earn everything both on the court and in the classroom. His family also encouraged him to leave Detroit and get the full college experience away from home. Xavier (LA) was an opportunity to see a different part of the world, so Ed committed to Coach Williams and Xavier (LA)!
Deciding to move to Louisiana and attend Xavier (LA) has been a good decision for Ed so far. XULA is coming off of a season where they had a relatively young team, and finished 18-14. Ed enjoys playing for Coach Williams and the coaching staff at XULA. The coaching staff stays on him about being too unselfish, and to shoot the ball when he’s open. They have made him a better player, and he is excited to have two more years with them to compete for a Gulf Coast Athletic Conference (GCAC) championship.
Winning the GCAC is no east task though. It is a tough league that seems to get better each year. Ed loves the competition of the league, and stated that, regardless of a teams record, you have to bring it every night. He said that the fans are involved at every game, which helps to amp up the intensity of the contest. They get to play in a lot of great environments, especially the city rivalries that they have with other programs in New Orleans.
Outside of the GCAC schedule, XULA had the unique opportunity to travel to the US Virgin Islands to play the University of the Virgin Islands. For Ed, it was one of the best moments he’s had as a student-athlete. The opportunity to go visit the islands, hang with his teammates, and play basketball, is a memory that Ed will have forever. A memory that a kid from Detroit never thought he would have.
With two years left to play, Ed has the opportunity to still leave his own legacy at Xavier (LA). He’s excited about his junior season as he’s expecting a lot from his team. He doesn’t believe in small team goals, and has his sights set on Xavier (LA) winning the GCAC regular season championship, GCAC tournament championship, and a National championship. He has plenty of personal goals as well, but he said that he would sacrifice all of them in order to win a team championship.
Ed is a great kid, who will do big things even after basketball. He has a great outlook on life, and feels blessed for being able to play for Xavier (LA) and in the NAIA. Coming from NCAA D1, Ed has a lot of respect for how good NAIA players are. He encourages all kids to find their fit, and find a level where they can play, and win! Xavier (LA) will be a team to watch this year both in the GCAC, and as a potential national Top 25 team in NAIA DI. Ed will play a major role in their success this year, and we look forward to following them!