Some say that it’s not about the final destination, but rather the journey that it takes to reach that destination that truly counts. If ever there was someone to embody such a saying it would be Waukee’s standout hoops star, Noah Hart.
Hart, a senior at Waukee High School, recently put a bow on his high school tenure in the way all athletes wish to, a signed commitment to play at the collegiate level. Before the week turned over to the weekend on April 26, Hart delivered an announcement that was years in the making as he officially committed to play for Minnesota State University.
“It’s a great feeling and such a relief to have this weight off my shoulders,” said Hart. “It’s something I’ve worked towards my entire high school career and now it’s happened, I’m going to play college ball.”
It was an announcement that Waukee basketball fans were anxiously awaiting and it put a wrap on a tumultuous senior campaign for Hart. After the hardwood hero made a name for himself early on by adding an All-State tournament type season his junior year, a lot of excitement and expectations fell on Hart for his final high school season.
Throughout the course of life, there are many twists and turns and for Hart himself, his high school hoops career was no different. What began with great promise ended up lasting just twelve games before a knee injury sidelined Hart’s final high school season, leaving him with 135 points scored and a lot of devastation for his farewell campaign.
“Senior year I was really looking forward to being a team captain and leading this team to another state tournament run,” began Hart. “The first eleven games were great but then game twelve came along and I had a little hiccup and came down a little wrong. The first thing I did was hope nothing was too serious but the results came back as a torn ACL which was pretty devastating.”
Life sometimes has a funny way of putting things into perspective and after the injury, with several colleges pulling out of the Noah Hart sweepstakes, perspective was what the senior mentioned helped him make it through.
“The entire process was hard and at times it was hard to be on the court knowing I wouldn’t be playing but in the end, it’s all about how you present yourself,” mentioned Hart. “I presented myself with everything happens for a reason and I really stuck to that.”
The ever-optimistic Hart kept pushing through any doubts and negativity and for his efforts, found the right place in Minnesota State University. Despite several other offers from various other collegiate institutions such as Southwest Minnesota State, the pull towards Minnesota State was too strong as it held a special place for Hart.
“Looking back it’s almost funny, even with the colleges that dropped out, I still found the best possible fit for me,” began Hart. “It’s just like that saying goes when you know, you know. I knew instantly after I took a tour, this felt like home to me and a place I could thrive the most on the basketball court. They have a family type atmosphere that’s hard to find and that’s one of the big things I was looking for.”
At long last, after 480 points, 93 made field goals, and countless numbers of ankle-breaking moves, Hart has finally arrived as a-soon-to-be collegiate basketball player.
“It’s surreal to think about but ultimately my goals haven’t changed,” began Hart. “I now trade in my pursuit for a high school championship for a national championship.”
As mentioned by Hart himself, his time table for a full recovery comeback is estimated to stretch until late July. As for Hart’s time on the collegiate court, he has decided to red shirt his freshman campaign and will play basketball in an official capacity in the 2021-2022 season.
It’s certainly been a wild journey for Hart but in the end, he’s come to the place we all knew he would end up at, playing hoops at the collegiate level and he’s done so in a way we should all take notice. It’s not about the final destination, but rather the journey it takes and no one is more evidenent of that then one and only Noah Hart.