CRF member selected for AF men's basketball team try out

Senior Airman John Robertson, 741st Missile Security Forces Squadron convoy response force leader, is one out of 22 Airmen selected to try out for the Air Force men’s basketball team. Those selected to try out for the AF men’s basketball team will go TDY for 27 days to compete in the All-AF Men’s Basketball Trial Camp in San Antonio, Texas, and the 2014 Armed Forces Men’s Basketball Championship at Ramstein Air Base, Germany. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Joshua Smoot)

Senior Airman John Robertson, 741st Missile Security Forces Squadron convoy response force leader, is one out of 22 Airmen selected to try out for the Air Force men’s basketball team. Those selected to try out for the AF men’s basketball team will go TDY for 27 days to compete in the All-AF Men’s Basketball Trial Camp in San Antonio, Texas, and the 2014 Armed Forces Men’s Basketball Championship at Ramstein Air Base, Germany. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Joshua Smoot)

Senior Airman John Robertson, 741st Missile Security Forces Squadron convoy response force leader, performs a lay-up Oct. 17 at the Malmstrom Air Force Base fitness center. Robertson, 22, is one out of 22 Airmen selected to try out for the Air Force men’s basketball team. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Joshua Smoot)

Senior Airman John Robertson, 741st Missile Security Forces Squadron convoy response force leader, performs a lay-up Oct. 17 at the Malmstrom Air Force Base fitness center. Robertson, 22, is one out of 22 Airmen selected to try out for the Air Force men’s basketball team. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Joshua Smoot)

MALMSTROM AIR FORCE BASE, Mont. -- Senior Airman John Robertson, 741st Missile Security Forces Squadron convoy response force leader, was one out of 22 Airmen recently selected to try out for the Air Force men's basketball team.

"It feels great to be selected for this," Robertson said. "I may not be the best player in the world, but I think I have the determination and the heart to play against Division I (college) players."

Those selected to try out for the AF men's basketball team will go TDY for 27 days to compete in the All-AF Men's Basketball Trial Camp in San Antonio, Texas, and the 2014 Armed Forces Men's Basketball Championship. Players not earning a position of the final team will return to their home station upon release from trial camp.

If he is selected to compete on the Armed Forces Men's Basketball All-Star Team, Robertson will go TDY an additional 24 days to represent the Air Force at the Armed Forces Men's Basketball Training Camp at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, Nov. 15-30, and the 2014 Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe International Basketball Tournament in Mons, Belgium, Dec. 1-8.

"I know there's going to be a lot of good competition," Robertson said. "I know a lot of the officers from the academy are going to be trying out and there's a lot of Division I college competition.

"It's going to be hard, it's going to be tough, but I think I can hang with them," he continued.

Making the team will be a huge accomplishment for Robertson.

"It would be great if I made the team," Robertson said.  "I'd feel lucky and think it will be a great experience for me whether I make it or not."

Robertson, 22, has been playing basketball ever since he was 6 or 7 years old. He grew up in Tuscon, Arizona, where he later moved to Delray Beach, Florida, to further pursue his education. Robertson enrolled at Palm Beach State College in Lake Worth, Florida, where he made the basketball team as a walk-on after trying out.

Standing 6 foot 7 inches tall, Robertson prefers to play center because he gets the opportunity to block a lot of shots.

"I like grabbing rebounds and playing on the defensive side as opposed to the offensive side," Robertson said.

But Robertson will be trying out as a small forward and power forward rather than playing as his usual center position.

"Generally when I play ball here I am the biggest guy, so I play center, but I know when I tryout I will be going against bigger guys, so I am going to be at a smaller position," Robertson said. "It's going to be something I am not used to as much, but I will still be able to play it."

Since finding out he was selected to try out for the team, Robertson has been working hard to get in top physical shape to prepare himself.

"Ever since I found out, I started doing two-a-day workouts," Robertson said. "In the morning I'll usually run and lift and when I get off of work I will have a shoot around or try to find pick-up games somewhere.

"I have been playing city league here so I have been playing a lot of games during that and that has been helping me," Robertson continued.

"The whole squadron is proud of Robertson and we are all hoping he is selected for the Air Force team," said Lt. Col. Brian Filler, 741st MSFS commander. "It would be a great honor to have a member of the 741st and Wing One representing the Air Force on its basketball team."