The Daily Press, March 16th 2031
Charlottesville, Va. Simon Fanning, the freshman phenom for the University of Virginia knows how to draw a crowd. Leading the Cavs' basketball team in points, rebounds, assists, and steals, Fanning is having one of the more memorable seasons in school history. During last night’s route of the Duke Blue devils at John Paul Jones arena, Fanning set a freshman record with his sixth triple double this season season.
“I’m just trying to get everyone involved. Tonight was a team effort, just like every night.”
With all the right answers, the 6’4” combo guard is enjoying a sensational streak, leading Virginia on a late season surge towards a #1 seed as the conference tournament approaches. Fanning is averaging a whopping 28 points, 14 rebounds and 8 assist over the last 5 games, and with March madness looming, excitement is swirling over the historic grounds in Charlottesville. Uva head coach Chris Paul explained just how special his young star has been to his team.
“This kid comes to play, whether its practice or crunch time, he’s out there doing everything in his power to help the team win.”
His on court success comes after a breakout season on the football field. The duel sport athlete threw for over 3,000 yards last season, leading Virginia to its first conference championship in over twenty five years. His 42 touchdown passes shattered both school and conference records, as Fanning showed the poise and skill set to excite both fans and nfl scouts sitting in the stands. One of those scouts, who wished to remain anonymous, gushed about the chance to nab the Heisman trophy winner
“I’ve been doing this for a long time, and I’ve never seen such a combination of foot speed and accuracy in a college quarterback. This kid is the real deal, we’d take him 1st right now if we could.”
Juggling two sports, most kids would have a difficult time focusing on their studies, but Fanning--a physics major, has little trouble shedding the cleats and hitting the lab, maintaining a perfect 4.0 gpa. Whispers of a potential Rhodes scholarship have surfaced on campus as Fanning is an active member of the Jefferson Literary and Debating Society. Following the footsteps of notable members such as Edgar Allen Poe and Woodrow Wilson, Fanning participates in weekly sunrise sessions, reading prose and poetry or taking part in vigorous debates on matters ranging from the impending oil crisis to often humorous critiques of current President Ben Affleck’s blunders in office.
Fanning is no stranger to the limelight. Following his rousing high school graduation speech, covered by C-Span and featured on The Today Show, Fanning spent the summer participating in a highly selective internship with Nasa, where he received the Milton award for his work on the Mars water-monitoring app that will be utilized with Apple’s forthcoming Ikitchen.
Fluent in French, German, Spanish, and Zulu, Fanning says he plans to spend the upcoming offseason taking part in the construction of a maternity ward for a remote village in South Africa.
Simon’s proud father, Pete Fanning, says he knew there was something special about his son from the very beginning.
“We came home from that there hospital and I says shoot. That boy there, he’s gonna be a smart one.”
And a smart one he is. Fanning attributes his success to his upbringing, praising his mother and father for their support in all of his interests, mentioning how thankful he is that his father never wrote outlandish blog posts chocked full of unattainable standards.
With all of his first year success, Fanning says for now he just wants to enjoy college life and help others in the process. From Rhodes scholar to future Nba star, Simon’s future looks full of promise. And who knows? Perhaps his next venture will be to tutor his father.