Portland Trail Blazers guard Rodney Hood has missed most of the 2019-20 season because of an Achilles injury, but he's used some of his time off to finish his degree at Duke, according to Eric Woodyard of ESPN.
"I've just got a real thirst for knowledge now, especially seeing how the world is, seeing how the disparity is with African American men, and I want to do something special," Hood said. "And getting a degree from Duke is special, especially coming from where I come from."
Hood began his college career at Mississippi State but transferred after one season to Duke. He left for the NBA draft in 2014, eight credits shy of earning his degree.
When the coronavirus pandemic began and the NBA shut down its season in March, Hood enrolled in online classes at Duke.
Blue Devils coach Mike Krzyzewski praised the player for his decision:
Hood's wife, Richa, also played basketball at Duke and earned a degree in 2014. She was also a key voice in convincing the six-year NBA veteran to return to school.
"When he got injured and tore his Achilles, that's when I really was like, 'Yeah, OK. You really need to make sure you try to focus on getting your degree, especially during this downtime," Richa said. "This was a perfect opportunity to earn some credits and strive to get it."
The 27-year-old will now try to mix school and rehab as he works to get back to the court after seeing his season come to an end in December.