The retired professional basketball player’s son transferred to Louisiana State University from the University of California Los Angeles in 2020. He chose the university because people there “didn’t really talk about” his dad, he told 225 Magazine in January 2021.
“[They said] ‘We want you to be Shareef. People here love you,’” the Los Angeles native explained at the time. “The LSU family is just really supportive, so I felt like that was the best option for me.”
Shareef “just want[s] to have fun” playing, he added. “Even though I couldn’t really score [at UCLA], when I was in the game for those couple minutes, I was just happy to be able to put the jersey on and play. Even if I shot a shot and I missed it, I was just happy to be able to shoot a shot.”
In July 2018, Shaquille exclusively told Us Weekly that Shareef and his siblings — Taahirah, Myles, Amirah, Shaqir and Me’arah — “always” called Kobe Bryant and LeBron James their favorite NBA players of all time.
The Shaq Uncut author’s kids only saw him as a “paycheck,” he joked at the time, explaining, “All they really see are Toys ‘R’ Us, the Apple store, Best Buy and all of that stuff. … To them, I’m Dad.”
“She’s a perfectionist on the court. I’m not quite sure where she got that from, but yeah, she loves it,” the Michigan native said on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert. “I never thought I would let my daughter play tennis, but then during this [coronavirus] pandemic, it was the only thing that we could do safely so I’m like, ‘Well, tennis it is.’ … I wouldn’t naturally put her in it, but if that was something that she wanted to do, I would absolutely be like, ‘Oh, my gosh, you should totally do that.’ And I’d be rooting for her and supporting her, but it wouldn’t be the first thing that I would do.”
The athlete went on to call tennis “all consuming,” “stressful” and “a huge commitment.”