2023’s Elijah Fields brings a football mindset to the hardwood | Youth1

2023’s Elijah Fields brings a football mindset to the hardwood

Elijah Fields is one of the best players from the Houston, Texas area in the Class of 2023.


The 5-foot-11, 210-pound Fields, who attends Legacy The School of Sport Science and plays for the Texas Footwork Bengals, is an imposing player that works as a power forward.  


Fields also plays football as a defensive lineman for the Texas Footwork Bengals, and has earned plenty of recognition, such as MVP and Defensive MVP.


Fields is humbled by the accolades and wants to transition them to the basketball court as well.


Fields is currently ranked as the No. 27 basketball player on Indilocker.com.


“I have not received any awards or all-star invites as of yet for basketball but when I do the recognition will just make me work harder because I want to be the best in everything I do.  For football it meant everything to know all my hard work that I have put in from the workouts really paid off in the end,” Fields said. “I have been to New York City to play in an all-star event for football. It was so much excitement and to know that I had a marvelous game and I represented the state of Texas.”


No matter the opponent, every game Fields is determined to give it his all.


Fields is going all out.


The motor is always at full throttle whenever Fields steps between the lines.


“My mindset is be a beast every time I touch the court or field in whatever position I am placed at,” Fields said. “I want the opponent to have to grind for everything they get while I’m out there.”


Fields has great passion and energy whenever he’s on the hardwood. Fields tells why he enjoys the game of basketball so much.


“I love just being on the court with my team and giving 110 percent,” Fields said. “It feels great to be a part of a team that feels like my family and to celebrate winning with them.”


Fields has learned many valuable lessons from playing basketball that he applies to his everyday life.


The main one is applying perspective to all situations.


“Basketball has taught me a lot about life,” Fields said. “It has taught me that nothing will ever come easy and that I have to work hard every day.”


Fields recalls his favorite basketball memory.


“My favorite memory is when we went to nationals and I hit the buzzer-beater to take us to the final four,” Fields said. “It was an amazing feeling to come through for my team like that and I’ll never forget it.”


Anthony Stephens is Fields’s coach at the Texas Footwork Bengals. 


Stephens explains the best parts of Fields’ game.


“Elijah plays the 3 and the 4 positions for us.  The best part of his game at the 3 spot are running the floor and finishing on the break, he can guard the 1, 2 and 3 positions, and he has develop a 3 point shot.  The best part of his game at the 4 spot are rebounding, finishing on the break, and plays aggressive and physical all the time,” Stephens said. “The techniques I like at each positions are:  he's very aggressive, athletic and physical, and attacks the glass offensively and defensively.”

Fields takes his role as one of the leaders on the team very seriously. Fields makes sure he’s a daily positive influence on his peers.


“I see that my team feeds off my energy on the court so I try to have a positive attitude. I push them in practice to be better,and build some of my teammates’ confidence by making them go against me in practice,” Fields said. “I tell them we can’t give up on each other. We are all we have and we are a brotherhood.”


Stephens adds that Fields is one of those consummate teammates that every squad needs to be successful.


“Right now, Elijah leads by example,” Stephens said. “His teammates know who's the enforcer on our team is. They know who we can't afford to be in foul trouble, and he challenges the other team best player in a positive way.”


Fields is appreciative of having amazing male role models that are supportive.


“My coach taught me grades comes first. I can never give up on my team or anything else in life.  Make the smartest decision on and off the court,” Fields said. “There is always someone watching me and to give my all from the beginning to the end. Don’t ever quit in nothing I do.”


Stephens is an advocate of Fields’ capabilities.

“In our last tournament, we were down by 14 at the half.  The other team’s best player had 22 points at the half. After our discussion at halftime, Elijah wanted the assignment to guard the opposing team best player,” Stephens said. “Long story short, the kid only finished with 24 points at the end of the game.  Also, in that specific game, he knocked down some timely threes. We win the tournament and game by one point.”


In addition to making clutch plays, Fields is developing a high level of basketball IQ as well.


Fields is growing into excellent basketball awareness that puts him in position to thrive.


“Right now, he knows the basic fundamentals of basketball to make plays.  He has the ability to know when to take a shot and anticipate passes on the defensive end,” Stephens said. “Lastly, he is starting to know how to utilize his teammates skills to enhance his personal growth and development and cover up his weaknesses.”


Fields is on the grind to perfect and hone his craft in any way possible.


“Elijah has a great work ethic.  I know he trains with a personal trainer two times per week.  Also, he comes to practice early to put up extra in-game shots,” Stephens said. “I have been to one of his workout and it consist of a lot footwork, jumping on the vertical max machine, and a lot of reacting/quick twitch drills.  At practice, we work on basic low post footwork drills and a lot of individual shooting drills.”

Stephens explains why he compares Fields to these players.  


“I compare him to Karl Malone.  Currently, he's 5-foot-11, 210 pounds of muscle and girth.  He is very physical, athletic, and can run the floor. When he's engaged, he is a very good two-way player.  Not to mention, he has a feathery touch from 12 feet out to the 3-point line,” Stephens said. “If I have to compare him to current college and pro player, I would say Naz Reid from LSU and Paul Millsap from the Denver Nuggets.”


Fields patterns his mentality after the projected No. 1 pick in the upcoming 2019 NBA Draft.


“I have been watching Zion Williamson since high school and I modeled my game like him before he went to Duke,” Fields said. “He is an all-around player on the court. Everyone that I have ran across this year has also compared me to Zion.”


Fields is constantly striving for greatness in everything that he does.


“I want to play both football and basketball at the University of Miami and get my bachelors in architecture,” Fields said. “Once completed,  I would like to play in both NFL and NBA.”

Stephens outlines the areas of improvement that will take Fields to the next level.


“Right now, we are working with him on staying engage in the game at all time.  Also, we are encouraging him to start leading vocally such as holding teammates accountable if they are not doing their job, cheering for his teammates he's in foul trouble, and teaching new kids on the team on how to do drills correctly,” Stephens said. “I know we need to help him improve his ball handling skills.”


Stephens believes the sky is the limit as long as Fields continues to stay hungry.  


“Elijah will be a future Division I athlete.  He's a special kid. He has a great support system in place.  He's a student-athlete with some leadership traits,” Stephens said. “Along with experience, him staying focus on the task at hand, and continuing to be humble, he will be a future ESPN Top 300 athlete.”



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