This 4’5” 11-Year-Old Varsity High School Basketball Player Is Awesome

He’s 14 inches shorter than the next-shortest player on the team and also in FIFTH GRADE.

Julian Newman is a dude. At 4’5” and 11 years old, he’s the starting point guard for Downey Christian School in Florida, where his father coaches. And a New York Times story from this weekend describes how he ended up being the smallest — and often best — player on the court. (According to the Times, multiple teams have forfeited games against Downey Christian this year to avoid the embarrassment of losing to him.) But to really understand how ridiculous this kid is, you’ve got to see it.

2. First, to whet your appetite, a little practice tape.

3. Not bad! Not bad at all. Really not bad. Quite good, actually.

4. When you’re this small, it’s pretty essential that you have a runner in your arsenal, since that’s your best chance at getting shots past taller players in the paint.

5. Newman also has the unconscious passing abilities of a true point guard — he appears to know where he’s teammates are on the court at all times.

6. Maybe the most remarkable thing about Newman is that he can shoot threes: number one, he has to get them over defenders, and number two, that’s a long shot for a 70-pound body.

7. Actually, scratch that: the most remarkable thing about Newman is his handles. He dribbles like a Fun-Sized Allen Iverson.

8. He basically has to use his entire body to throw this pass.

9. Nothing like a delirious crossover that never goes higher than your opponent’s knees.

10. Here’s video of Newman playing, from about two months ago. When this kid grows — let’s just say, I’m optimistic about his future.

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