In his 1998 biography, former NBA player Robert Horry wrote that 12 Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups set him on the path to success. Whether he was playing in a game or not, he would always have four of them waiting for when hunger struck and helped fuel an illustrious career. What role did peanut butter cups play in Horry’s life?
Robert Horry, who played for the Houston Rockets and San Antonio Spurs, explains how 12 Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups set him on the path to success.
Robert Horry is an expert at winning. Horry was a seven-time NBA champion with the Los Angeles Lakers, San Antonio Spurs, and Houston Rockets. The 6-foot-10 forward was also recognized for his clutch play, earning the moniker “Big Shot Bob.”
Horry has a solid head on his shoulders as well. His father, a military guy, and mother, a teacher, set him on the correct road as a child. Twelve Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups pushed him in the right way.
Robert Horry has always valued education.
On March 26, 2003, in Houston, Texas, Robert Horry of the Los Angeles Lakers looks up at the ball during a game versus the Houston Rockets at Compaq Center. | Getty Images/Brian Bahr
Horry and Lakers icon Michael Cooper traveled back in time during a recent appearance on the Showtime With Coop podcast.
Horry’s life was discussed by the two long before he spent 16 years in the NBA. Horry said that he never saw himself in the NBA. His ambition was to get a college diploma and eventually work as a coach. He attended Alabama for four years but never graduated before joining the NBA. Horry made it happen after becoming wealthy and renowned as a pro basketball player.
Cooper was inspired to return to school and get his degree by a former colleague.
“Making the All-Academic Team in high school was one of my biggest accomplishments,” Horry remarked. “In high school, I was both Academic Player of the Year and Player of the Year. Those two achievements were amazing for me. It made my mother happy.
“I just completed my college education. Your old colleague Byron Scott inspired me to do it since I saw where he went back to get his degree. I was constantly fiddling with it, and I went to college for four years and took the easy way out. I don’t mean the easy route in a negative manner; I just took the bare minimum of lessons.
“All of my coaches were furious with me since they claimed you’d be disqualified if you failed one class.” I stated I wasn’t going to fail any classes. I never saw myself in the NBA. I just intended to earn a degree and work as a coach or teacher. The educational component was crucial.”
Horry recounts an event involving 12 Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, which he credits with getting him on the right track.
Cooper inquired about Horry’s upbringing. He inquired whether he “ever had a whoopin’” as a kid. Horry didn’t have to think long to recall one specific occasion.
Horry recounted, “Me and a buddy of mine went to a shop.” “Of course, I didn’t have enough money, so I left with a 12-pack of Reese’s cups.” I just wrote it down in my notepad and went away. They caught me, and I can’t believe I’m telling you this tale, Coop, but that’s how much I care about you.
“They contacted my grandmother at a Piggly Wiggly. My mother was studying for her Master’s degree in Huntsville, Alabama. So, let me say something. My grandmother slapped me. My granddad then whooped me. My mother drove up from Huntsville and gave me a big hug. Then my father arrived from South Carolina and whooped me.
“That made me swear I would never steal again.” That was one of the things I used to tell myself. I said that you must do what is right in life, and stealing is not one of them.
“Even though Reese’s cups are still my favorite, every time I pick one up, I remember those four ass-whoopings.”
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