BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Before Nick Pringle shined on the brightest stage in college basketball, he had to make a stop in Dodge, City Kansas.
Nicknamed the "Cowboy Capital of The World," the midwestern town’s main strip features an Applebees’, an IHOP and a myriad of Mexican restaurants melded together in an outdated homage to the Old West. Dodge City doesn’t offer much in terms of social life, but it’s the ideal setting to establish a blue-collar identity.
"It was a place in the middle of nowhere," Pringle said. "There was nothing really to do there but grind. I kind of got that dog in me from there. I just learned how to be a better person there and it helped me in the long run."
Playing in a 1,500-seat community college arena wasn’t part of the plan for Pringle. The Seabrook, South Carolina native spent his first season of college four hours away from home at Wofford College. In 15 games with the Terriers, he averaged ...