OSKALOOSA — What has Wade Votroubek been up to since leaving Oskaloosa High School?
Votroubek is about to start up his redshirt junior year at Willam Penn University. He plays basketball for the Statesmen and graduated from Oskaloosa in 2016.
When asked why he chose Willam Penn he said, “I think it was the tradition there. I mean most of their programs there has a winning tradition. I think they announced last year it was like 15 or 16 national appearances in all of the sports since I believe 2005,” he said. “So all the cultures combining together is something special and you wouldn’t think you’d find something like that in a small town like Oskaloosa.”
In high school, Votroubek played all four years of basketball, three years of baseball and one year of football, which was his freshman year.
He chose to play basketball in college because he said it clicked his freshman year of high school that basketball was his better sport out of all the sports he played, so he decided to take basketball as far as he could.
The first couple of years for Votroubek at Willam Penn was a big culture shock but has gone very well.
“You grow up here in Osky knowing everybody for years on end and then I went to college and met so many people that have transferred or have been done with school and graduated and have gone their separate ways,” he said. “Some of them I keep in contact with and some of them I lost contact with so it was a very big culture shock but I mean you make memories and it has been a blast so far and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.”
In his career at Willam Penn, the Statesmen have made it to the final four, and won the regular season conference championship in the same year and then made it to the sweet 16 the next year.
“I mean it was very sad and very untimely because we lost one of our teammates during the year of the final four and that I think it hindered us in our performance in the conference tournament because we never thought something like that would happen,” he said. “This last year even though we didn't go as far as we wanted to in the tournament, or our regular season didn’t go as we wanted it to, It was still a great accomplishment making it to the sweet 16 because it wasn’t up to our standards as what we all agreed on as a program.”
The difference between playing a college sport and high school sport, to Votroubek, is in college its a full-time job.
“When you're not in school or doing homework you don't have a whole lot of time if you take it seriously to relax, kick back and play video games as you did in high school," he said. "You are either working out, doing basketball drills in your free time, or putting shots up. If you're serious about it you're going to do everything in your power to help your teammates win that national championship."
In high school, Votroubek played center.
“I mainly stayed within the free throw lane and I was taller than the rest of the competition so I was in the middle trying to spread things out.”
In college, he plays more of a power forward and center. It's kind of a stretch four and five so he can shoot the three a little bit, he can drive and shoot pull up jumpers, or take it all the way into the paint and post up like he did in high school.
His favorite memory in high school was during his junior year. It was Coach Ryan Parker's first year as head coach for the Indians.
“Fairfield was up by one and they missed a shot and I was running the floor and Jack was trailing me with the ball and there were two defenders in between us. So Jack kicked it to me and I got the game-winning layup," he said." Then they had enough time to come back down and we went back down on defense and the Fairfield came down for a wide open layup and I jumped up and block it.”
It was the first game of that season and they tied the previous seasons winning record.
His favorite memory in college was just this past year.
“More so then any team I have been apart of, we were a family. We always included one another and always did everything together as a group.”
Votroubek said one night they went out to eat for a team meal at Nationals and Votroubek was at a table with a couple of his teammates.
“We just had so much food. There were ribs, steak – I mean, I can't express how much food there was.”
All of the player's jaws dropped when they saw the food except for one person and that was one of Votroubeks friends. They all looked at him and asked what's wrong and he said: “I don't eat pork or beef.” He then asked for chicken tenders and Votroubek said he couldn't believe it and thought it was hilarious how he asked for chicken tenders at one of the best barbeque places in Kanas City.
Votroubek is majoring in sports marketing and minoring in business. His future plan is to become an athletic director for a school whether its high school or college. If that doesn't go as planned he wants to run something sports-wise because he feels like his life is always involved around sports and he doesn't want to get away from it.