Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Sarasota Athlete of the Week: Mike Drayton

The Sarasota High senior boys basketball player was named the FACA District 16 Class 7A Player of the Year on Feb. 13.

Sarasota High boys basketball senior Mike Drayton.
Sarasota High boys basketball senior Mike Drayton.
Photo by Ryan Kohn
  • Sarasota
  • Sports
  • Share

Mike Drayton is a senior on the Sarasota High boys basketball team. Drayton was named the Florida Athletic Coaches Association District 16 Class 7A Player of the Year on Feb. 13. Drayton, who transferred to the Sailors from Tampa Catholic before the season, has shown an ability to score and defend with Sarasota. He had 10 points in the Sailors' 63-36 district title win over North Port High on Feb. 10. 

When did you start playing basketball?

I started when I was 5. My dad (Michael Drayton) played basketball at the University of North Florida. My family put me in different sports. I played football until fifth grade. But I eventually stopped and focused on basketball. 

What is the appeal to you?

It has ups and downs, just like life. There are days where I ask myself, "Why are you even doing this?" But it always goes back to being fun. Basketball is always there. It takes my mind off other things any time something happens. 

What is your best skill?

I feel like I can score at all three levels, and I defend well. If I'm having a bad offensive day, there's never a day where I defend bad. I'm always guarding the best player on the other team. 

What have you been working to improve?

The past two years I have struggled with my confidence. Some of the coaches I have had didn't do anything to help with that. But this year is one of the best I have had because of Coach BJ (Ivey). He's built my confidence back up. 

What was the team feeling after the district championship win?

We had a lot of new people on our team this year, a lot of transfers like myself. Some of us knew each other (before), but not really. I feel like our bond had grown a lot since the summer. And winning that district championship, you could feel the excitement everyone had. We know the job is not done, but we were happy for sure. 

What does the team have to do to keep winning?

We can't get a big head. We can't get off our path to success or play down to our competition. We still have to make our shots and defend well. If we do those things then our chances (to advance) are high. 

What is your favorite food?

I love Hot Chikn Kitchn. It's right next to the school. I'm dual-enrolled at the State College of Florida now, but when I was coming here (Sarasota High) for classes, my teammates would make fun of me because I would eat at Hot Chikn all the time. I'm eating it less now, but it's still good. 

What is your favorite TV show?

That's tough. I watch a lot of shows. I like "Outer Banks" a lot, that's one of them. 

What is your favorite school subject?

When I was taking classes here, it was piano class. I actually got a piano for Christmas so I can keep playing. Learning to play a whole song is a great feeling. It's a way to challenge myself. 

Which superpower would you pick?

I think flying would be cool. 

What is the best advice you have received?

Always bet on yourself. It goes back to the confidence thing: Don't miss an opportunity because of you're second-guessing yourself, or because of what other people say about you. Focus on what you can control. 

Finish this sentence: "Mike Drayton is … "




Ryan Kohn

Ryan Kohn is the sports editor for Sarasota and East County and a Missouri School of Journalism graduate. He was born and raised in Olney, Maryland. His biggest inspirations are Wright Thompson and Alex Ovechkin. His strongest belief is that mint chip ice cream is unbeatable.

Latest News