Deckard releases on a three earlier in the season. 
Deckard releases on a three earlier in the season. KOKOMO HERALD FILE PHOTO

Trajan Deckard recently made his commitment to continue his education and athletic career at Indiana University Kokomo next fall. The Kokomo High School senior will join the men’s basketball program under second year head coach Tom Church. 

“I like Coach Church’s style of play and the guys, met with them a few times. They’re really nice people and I feel it’s a nice fit for me,” Deckard said. “It’s a really competitive level. There are a lot of great schools in that conference. I’ve seen a few teams in that conference and they’re really tough. IUK had a great season last season so I’m pretty sure that we’ll pick right back up next year. The program is on the rise.”

Deckard shot an impressive 43.1 percent from beyond the three point arc and 83.2 percent from the free throw line for the Wildkats this year. He shot 49.8 percent from the field. 

Kokomo Head Coach Bob Wonnell said Deckard was a leader on the floor in his first season at Kokomo. He said he appreciated the work ethic of the senior who played a big role in establishing the Wildkats future under their new head coach.

“He leads by example. He plays hard every day. He tries to get better every day and that’s what you want from your senior guys. It’s easy to play hard, especially when you have good statistics like he had, but I thought, for the most part, all season long leading by example every day. If you don’t show up every day to get better, you’re not going to be a very good basketball player and you won’t have a good team,” said Wonnell. “Trajan showed up every day with a good attitude and he worked hard on and off the court.”

For Deckard, he’s excited to continue playing in front of a home crowd at Memorial Gym.

“I’ll have lots of local support,” he said. “There are a lot of people who have supported me since middle school and it will be nice to see them keep coming as I continue my basketball career at a higher level and show that love and support that they want to see me play and do better.”

He said playing at the next level is a goal that he set for himself and that achieving that goal fulfilled a dream.

As for being part of Kokomo’s boys basketball legacy?  Deckard described the experience as fun.

“It feels good being part of the Kokomo legacy. Kokomo has been through a lot. State Runner-Up, a lot of Sectionals. It’s just fun to be around it,” he said. “It was great at Kokomo because we held the record for Sectionals and we tried our best to get Sectional the past four years, but it was tough going against the guys we went against. There are a lot of great schools in our conference and on our schedule. It didn’t go the way we wanted but overall, but I love the school and everyone who has supported us.”

Wonnell said that it was important to his program to have seniors that would show up every day with good attitudes and work hard. 

“Trajan was certainly as good as anyone doing that. That’s what we need to lay our foundation with, is hard work and dedication to get better every day and try to put Kokomo boys basketball first,” Wonnell said. “I think Trajan did a good job of modeling that as a senior captain this year.”

“It was great. I wish I had one more year to be back with the young guys, keep leading them. I feel like coach has a really good plan for them over the next three years. I hope they can get it together and play as one,” he said.

At IU Kokomo, Deckard plans to study athletic training.