Griffin Templeton knew at a young age that he probably wasn't going to cut it as a post player.
He may have always been the tallest player on his teams but when he looked at some of his AAU team's better opponents, kids his size were playing point guard, not center.
With encouragement from his father, Templeton concentrated on his ball handling skills and, when he tried out for the seventh-grade basketball team at Concord Middle School, he volunteered to play point guard.
Now a senior at Concord High, Templeton is a two-year starting guard and is one of the Spiders' best shooters and most consistent players.
Never miss a local story.
A three-year varsity player, he wants to lead Concord back to a state championship, which it earned during his freshman year while he played for the junior varsity.
When he was younger, Templeton had no problem being several inches taller than his contemporaries and "dominating" in basketball, he admits. He picked up dribbling skills and drills at basketball camps conducted by current Concord coach Scott Brewer and former Spiders coach Andy Poplin.
He made the transition to guard during his middle school years and was a fixture by the time he reached high school. Templeton helped the JV Spiders win a conference championship as a ninth-grader and had an inkling that he would be playing a second year with the junior varsity.
"Coach (Matt) Sides was all excited about having Griffin back to be his leader on the JV team," Brewer said. "I saw his leadership ability, I saw his toughness, and I saw his work ethic. I saw, coming in as a new coach, he was the type of kid I could work with."
"That was a big shock to me," Templeton said.
The Spiders were coming off the 2007 3A state championship and Brewer, the former Central Cabarrus coach, was entering his first season at Concord. Templeton was a role player off the bench, finding his way on a team led by seniors Danny Nieman, Jimmy Drye and Adam Beam.
Templeton's favorite moment came during a home victory over Sun Valley when he rained in six three-pointers in the first half and finished with 20 points. Concord tied the school record it set the previous season by winning 27 games while losing four.
Moving into a starting position as a junior, the 6-foot-1 Templeton averaged 12 points a game as the Spiders reached the 3A West regional final and finished 29-2.
Now a senior, Templeton is one of Concord's several three-point marksmen. The Spiders made 11 threes in a pre-Christmas victory over Northwest Cabarrus, improving to 4-3.
Brewer scheduled some of the toughest non-conference opponents in the area (Winston-Salem's Mount Tabor, Hopewell and Salisbury), and Templeton believes that will help prepare the Spiders for another long state playoff run.
An honors student and winner of a county Impact Through Education Award this school year, Templeton says he wants to attend UNC Wilmington, where he plans to be a walk-on for the basketball team.