Celebrity Names Blog

These Basketball Players Have Uncommon Skills and Names

It's basketball season, and several of this year's college basketball players have names as memorable as their talent.

Orion Outerbridge, who plays for the University of Rhode Island, is nearly seven feet tall. Given his formidable height and aggressive basketball skills, it seems appropriate that he is named for Orion, the fearless Greek mythological hunter. Earlier this week we wrote about whether or not it's a good idea to discuss your baby's name with family before his birth. Interestingly, Orion's naming was a joint decision by his mother, father and uncle--one they made in the hospital mere hours before Orion was born. It may have been a last-minute call, but we think they did good!

Jimmer Fredette, who plays for Brigham Young University, is really James Fredette, but he has been Jimmer since the day he was born. James is the name of his mother's brother, but Jimmer was the nickname of a high school friend's younger brother, and Mrs. Fredette always liked it. It's difficult to enforce a nickname, but we're impressed with the lengths that Mrs. Fredette went to in order to ensure that her son was called what she wanted him to be called; she apparently went to his school and requested that no one call him Jimmy, Jim or James. Only Jimmer.

Onochie Ochie, who plays for Southeastern Louisiana University, is a born and bred southerner, but his name comes from Nigeria's Ibo tribe. In the South, it's not uncommon for a son to go by junior; Onochie is essentially the Ibo tribe's version of junior. It means "to replace," as in to take the place of the father. Onochie's middle name is Charles, which is his father's first name. He is literally the replacement of Charles.

Beloved Rogers, who plays on the Prairie View A & M University team, actually got his name from another much more common name. When his mother learned that David comes from the Hebrew for beloved, she decided to skip the more traditional name altogether and go directly for its meaning. We like this idea in theory but think you can probably take it too far. While the Hebrew meaning of Benjamin, for instance, is lovely (son of the right hand), it's also a mouthful, and it might be tough to be Son of the Right Hand on the playground.

University of Cincinnati player Cashmere Wright has the kind of name that is bound to make a boy a player on and off the court. As a child, Wright went by his middle name, Akeem, but when he learned that the ladies much preferred Cashmere, he embraced his first name. Now, he often goes by Cash, but we think Cashmere is the real golden nugget here. It doesn't get more debonair than Cashmere Wright. Unfortunately, though she came up with Cashmere after hearing it on TV, Wright's mother has always preferred Akeem. She still has trouble calling him by his first name.

What do you think of these boys' unique names? Can you relate to any of their naming stories? Did you pick a name at the last minute? Insist on a particular nickname? Find inspiration in something you heard on television?



Please do not add links to your comments. Thank you.

December 15, 2010 10:29 AM
By Jennie NLI (not verified)

remembering this story on NCAA names from last spring. http://www.namecandy.com/celebrity-baby-names/blog/2010/04/05/lacedarius-and-ncaa-names

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