By Tagwa Moyo
On Jan. 24, The Eyeopener learned that Waterloo basketball star Myles Charvis would be transferring to Ryerson, with his debut coming next season. We sat down with Charvis and discussed his decision to leave Waterloo, being recruited by various NCAA schools and his love of Drake.
When you were in high school and started getting recruited did Ryerson ever approach you?
Yes they did, in my fifth year they were one of the first schools that every really got in contact with me. The past assistant coach, coach Smart, he saw me play in a tournament in high school at York and after the game he was like “Do you wanna come here, to Ryerson?” That was one of my top picks but I just happened to pick Waterloo over Ryerson at the time because I thought it was a better fit for me personally. But yeah, I definitely heard from Ryerson.
When Ryerson contacted you what was your perception of the school at the time?
At the time they were still a top five program in my eyes. In the CIS, I thought they were destined for good things. They had a good core group already with Aaron Best and Jahmal Jones so I thought they had their backcourt of the future. That was really one of the main reasons I didn’t go at the time, they were so good and so deep already. Having the opportunity to go to Waterloo for two years gave me the experience I needed. This is the perfect timing, this is definitely the school I need to go to.
Ultimately, the ability to further develop your game was why you chose Waterloo?
Exactly. Right away instead of learning in practice I was learning on the floor with game time minutes and game time production. Everything was in-game so I got a lot of experience. Whereas if I had gone to Ryerson I would have waited two years until Jones graduated because he was one of the best point guards in the league at the time and being a freshman, no matter how good you are, he was one of the best PG at that time. That was essentially why I picked Waterloo at the time, because I wanted experience developed and the whole league got to see what I could do.
That’s neat, was there any other schools that tried to recruit you in your senior year of high school?
I took a visit to Memorial [University], I got heavy recruitment to Carleton, but that was after I committed to Waterloo, and then Carleton wanted me to visit. To be honest that’s the only two I can remember — Ryerson too. Coming out of high school I wasn’t a top recruit like a lot of people thought I should be but that was cool with me.
In 2014-2015 you were the star of Waterloo, was it hard making the announcement that you were transferring?
It was very tough because I was starting to develop a pretty good relationship with the coach that’s there now in his second year there, Coach Grunter. But over the summer I still believed I was going to come back, it was the hardest part telling him that I wasn’t going to come back because he expected me to be a key component to what he was trying to do for the future. That was the main thing but ultimately I think it is going to be a better decision because every day I’m going to be pushed by guys that are better than me and playing at the same level every day we will be competing. At Waterloo since I was that top dog, I was pushing others to get better. I would have to work on my own or get a trainer but now it doesn’t matter if I have a trainer or not, because day to day I’ll be training with the best players in the country.
When you announced you were transferring from Waterloo, were there other schools that came to you besides Ryerson?
Initially I had Ryerson on my radar but I got an array of schools that contacted me. Ottawa, Carleton, Western. I took a visit to Calgary, University of Alberta wanted me to come up. A school in New York state contacted me. I definitely had a lot more options this year than I did in high school. It was a complete 180. Everything kinda felt new to me now I’m considered a top recruit because of my two years at Waterloo. I was very productive whereas in high school nobody really knew me. That’s why I don’t regret my choice going to Waterloo because it opened up the doors for all these other schools to want to contact me.
That must have felt good, in high school you weren’t recruited as much and now a number of universities contacted you, even NCAA schools. Was it hard deciding where you wanted to go? Possibly playing in the NCAA?
It is always tempting to go to an NCAA school, that’s every kid in Canada’s dream, to play in a big NCAA school. But me being a bit older I understand basketball isn’t forever so if I have a chance to get good competition, play for a top program home in Canada and get a great education, it’s a win-win in my books.
When you decided on Ryerson, what excited you to come play for Ryerson other than having a strong team?
I got to take a tour of the SLC. That entire learning facility I was like “Wow, this is top notch.” It just seems that everyone’s got something to do, they’re busy and it’s lively. The whole campus vibe is lively and everyone seems productive and it makes me want to do the same thing as well.
Plus we had Drake.
Exactly! Drake was there too for the concert. That’s a huge draw in itself.
Have you practiced with the team at all since confirming you’re coming to Ryerson?
Yes, I’ve come for two workouts. The first workout was just an individual workout with me and coach Tatham. And then I practiced with two other players, I can’t remember their names though. Then during the Christmas break I had a full team workout. That was an eye-opener, the way they pushed everyone. That was the day I was like I have got to come play over here!
Were you at the Carleton and Ottawa games?
Yeah, usually I come on Saturdays because I have the family pass so I can come to any games that I want to. I saw the Ottawa game and watched the Carleton game online.
So are you still a student at Waterloo?
Yeah, I’m just finishing up classes this semester and once I’m done I can transfer fully to Ryerson in September.
What do you hope to bring to the team?
More leadership, I was thrown into a leadership role so I kind of know how that goes. As well as just a competitive edge every day in practice and on the court, cheering guys on when they’re down, just trying to be that leader. Even though they have one, but once Adika is gone then they’re going to look for someone to lead the team. I think I can definitely bring some leadership qualities to the team like my competitive edge and my overall skill set I can defend, I’m fast and athletic. I’m going to bring everything I can, anything the coaches need that’s what I’m going to bring. I’m just excited!
Now was it always basketball for you?
I played football in high school for a couple of years. I also played soccer, soccer was big. I stopped playing soccer in the eighth grade because my parents made me. We were traveling too much for soccer, they were like “Myles you have to pick one, it’s either soccer or basketball,” and for me it was a no-brainer. Basketball. I also like to draw, I’m heavy into art. I like to draw and also fashion, especially when you’re downtown.
Especially at Ryerson, you have to come correct? Since Drake was here.
Exactly, you don’t know who you’re going to run into. And now the team’s hot like this. Drake is definitely coming to a game.
Is there anything else that you want people to know about Myles Charvis?
Just a kid from Mississauga like anyone else, has a dream to play basketball for as long as possible. As long as I can play until there’s no team for me to play on. Just as hard working in the classroom as well as on the court. That’s basically it!
Awesome, I look forward to watching you play man.
I can’t wait to play.
This interview has been edited for clarity.