Junior guard maps out life on and off court with aim for future success

A Game Plan for Life
Danny Peters talks about what he contributes to the Buckeyes and his plans for the future

By Leah Abouahmed,
Ohio State Athletics Communications/    

Danny Peters continuously asks himself what more he can do for the Ohio State basketball program. He might not be the player that gets his name in the paper every week, but he contributes a lot through his responsibilities to the squad. 

The junior walk-on’s giving attitude stretches beyond his Ohio State family. The team participates in events such as visiting people at local hospitals and the diabetes walk. Individually, Peters has spoken at schools about the importance of an education and enjoys doing similar activities when his schedule allows.

“It’s an opportunity to meet people and put a smile on their face,” Peters said. “I really enjoy helping others out. If you get to go out and make some kids day because you signed a basketball for him even though he might not know you don’t get a lot of minutes. He just knows you play for the Buckeyes and that makes his week, his month or even sometimes his year and he remembers that forever.”

He also helps make kids happy with the connections he has made over the years of being a Buckeye. Over the summer, Peters invited a boy who was going through some hard times to have dinner with himself and former Buckeye Greg Oden. Meeting Oden, made the child’s year and Peters was glad he could help out.

His first year at Ohio State, Peters took on the role of student manager. He played basketball in high school, but after his freshman season, Peters didn’t think too much about playing basketball again. Then the coaching staff asked Peters to join the roster for the 2007-08 season.

Peters approaches the team with an attitude of doing anything he can do to help the squad. He helps in the classroom or on the floor, passing to players before a game or helping Jon Diebler or William Buford warm up. He also enjoys talking to recruits on official visits.

“It’s my job to come in every day and be a great teammate and work hard,” Peters said. “And to remain positive no matter what if we win or lose, if I’m playing or not playing, if it’s a good practice or bad practice doesn’t matter I remain positive.”

As much as Peters loves playing the game of basketball, he would love to coach it even more in the future. He says he enjoys seeing a team come together and finding all the pieces that might not have been there in the beginning, but gradually works hard and make its way to being a top competitor.

“I like competition,” Peters said. “I enjoy the preparation that goes into it. I like seeing kids develop and get better. I like when a kid comes in and can’t use his left hand or can’t make a left-handed lay-up, but by the time he’s done in a season he’s using his left hand, he’s passing with his left hand and he can go up and shoot left-handed lay-ups.”

So it is no surprise that when Peters looks for his biggest influence, he only has to look to the other end of the bench. Dan Peters, Danny’s father, is the associate director of basketball operations for Ohio State. Peters also seeks advice from his high school coach, Wally Vickers.

“I try to talk to my high school coach because he was tough on people,” Peters said. “He would hold them accountable and make sure he got the most out of them. I try to ask him questions about how he would handle this or that it doesn’t have a lot to do with things here at Ohio State, but me individually. He helps me out a lot.”

And Coach Vickers sees a lot of coaching characteristics in Peters.

“He has all the qualities to be a great coach,” Vickers said. “He has the technical and strategic knowledge. He has his dad, who is one of the great minds of basketball. He understands, as a player, what goes into it. You have to have people skills, technical skills and work ethic to put it all together. Danny has them all.”

Vickers is not surprised to see Peters have the success he has had. Beyond being a great student-athlete, Vickers describes Peters as a good person who is unselfish off the court as he is on.

From life to basketball  Peters always has the right game plan.