Every Baumholder American High School basketball tryout under Dewayne Piggé starts the same way.
Sprints, squats, up to 100 push-ups and sit-ups, and more. No one touches a basketball for days.
“It’s about showing your effort, your heart,” Harvard sophomore Chandler Piggé said. “How much you’re willing to sacrifice for your brothers next to you.”
Piggé, a relentless, 6-foot-5-inch guard averaging 11.8 points, 6.8 rebounds, 2.2 assists, and 1.4 steals for the 4-1 Crimson, relies on the principles his father taught him. Born in Houston, Piggé moved to Japan at two months and spent his first 13 years serving as a water boy, manager, and more for Dewayne’s teams. They then relocated to Germany, where the Piggés teamed up to capture three straight championships as a formidable father-son duo.
Piggé had no offers out of high school, but his fundamentally sound, unselfish, and defensive-minded approach resonated with Harvard men’s coach Tommy Amaker. After a year at Phillips Exeter Academy in New Hampshire under coach Jay Tilton, Piggé signed with Harvard and is now making a name for himself.
“He’s a coach’s dream,” Amaker said. “There are guys that are low maintenance, and then there are guys that are no maintenance. He’s a no-maintenance kid.”
When Dewayne Piggé got a job working for Japan’s department of defense, he brought his family with him and started a new life. Chandler Piggé developed his competitive nature in Japan, battling much bigger and older players and sharpening his fundamentals.
The structure and discipline in every practice helped him learn the value of showing up on time, earning his spot, and playing the right way.
In Germany, he developed a knack for making the extra pass, scrambling on defense, and working with his teammates. It helped having his greatest mentor by his side, and he’s grateful that his father never treated him differently than other players.
“That was always my dream,” Piggé said. “Before college, and everything like that, I just wanted to play for my dad. I love my dad. I love him as a coach. I wouldn’t be here without him.”
Piggé initially envisioned himself at a school such as North Carolina, Kansas, or Duke. He emailed close to 30 schools, and watched as classmates racked up offers while none came his way.
His trainer put him in contact with Phillips Exeter, where he learned to combine fundamentals with athleticism and become a more attack-minded player.
Dewayne always preached the value of patience. Chandler waited to play for his father, waited for a Division 1 offer, then waited to play his freshman year at Harvard. His faith has helped keep him grounded throughout the journey.
Last season, he played in 18 games, started two, and earned the team’s sportsmanship award. Now, he’s a go-to option alongside freshman phenom Malik Mack and Chisom Okpara.
Piggé, who plays with a Kawhi Leonard-like mentality, is thrilled to be at a place he’s wanted, doing what he knew he could.
Playing in his home city, he poured in 23 points in a victory over Rice Nov. 10. In a resounding win over Northeastern last Tuesday, he poked the ball away from behind on one play, swooped in for a block later on, then swished a corner three moments later. He had 15 points, 11 rebounds, 3 assists, and 2 steals in an overtime triumph at UMass Friday.
As long as he’s a disruptor, making life miserable for the other team’s best player, that’s good enough for him.
“He’s willing to defend anybody,” Mack said. “He does all the little things. He really can do it all.”
Amaker said Piggé will become a captain in the future. He called him the team’s best perimeter defender, highly versatile, and very disciplined — someone who’s thoughtful and sees things deeply.
“He carries himself in a way that’s mature beyond his years,” Amaker said. “His work ethic is off the charts. He’s one of the most respected guys in the locker room.”
BC in a good place
The Hoag Basketball Pavilion, a flashy and modern complex with roughly 40,000 square feet of basketball-specific space, is in full use at Boston College.
The athletic department received a $15 million lead gift from Mikey and Jay Hoag in 2021 — the largest donation in BC athletics history — and has now completed the project.
Connected to Conte Forum, the pavilion has a practice gym, nutrition center, strength and conditioning center, sports medicine center, and more. The facility also has a dedicated video room for scouting and instruction.
“This facility is refreshing,” said BC men’s coach Earl Grant. “For two years, we didn’t have this. We used what we had, didn’t complain about it, but this is like a facelift. It’s helped our program tremendously.”
BC is 4-0 for the first time since 2007.
Trevor Hass can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.