Nick Emery — the BYU basketball player who recently withdrew from school, put his hoops career on hold and is being investigated by the NCAA for allegations of receiving improper benefits from a booster — wants you to know a few things.
In an effort to clear his name and get some stuff off his chest, Emery wrote a lengthy blog that was posted Monday morning at TheOutlive.com. (His name does not appear on the blog entry, which is titled "OUTLIVE THE TENDENCY,' but the Deseret News has confirmed that the 23-year-old was the author.)
Spoiler alert: Emery indeed plans on returning to BYU when things settle down in his life.
“I will be back Cougar Nation!” Emery wrote. “I am a Cougar and always will be!”
Emery claimed he’s been cleared of breaking the honor code by BYU despite accusations swirling around about his personal life and actions. Though he obviously isn’t fond of people spreading rumors in the aftermath of his divorce and situation with BYU and the NCAA, Emery admitted he understands why they have.
“People say ‘I heard he cheated on her/he was addicted to drugs/he went crazy/he can’t handle the pressure' …
“I have been accused of everything you possibly could be accused of being a terrible person,” Emery wrote. “To be honest, I would probably think the exact same thing if I heard this many things about someone too.
“So what is the truth? ‘Well, I heard’… so it must be the truth right? WRONG.”
Emery pointed out that he’s actually “incredibly grateful” for the honor code and the school’s investigation because it “only solidifies the facts and facts only.” He didn’t share any facts in this blog.
“I have been victim to false allegations, rumors and more things for several months. I have found out with almost anything in life, one thing could mean something to me and something totally different to someone else,” Emery wrote. “Every story has two sides whether we like it or not. Everything that I’m saying is how I perceive it and how I live. So if you don’t agree with it, I'm sorry! I hope by sharing my experience that someone can really learn something from it. I'm not hiding it.”
Emery didn’t give specifics, but he wrote that concern over his personal safety and the safety of his family factored into his withdrawing from BYU.
“So why did I withdraw after all? After countless nights of no sleep, school, basketball, divorce, NCAA, my family's safety and my own safety, I decided it was good to withdraw from school and put an end to all the craziness,” Emery wrote.
“I am incredibly grateful for my teammates, coaches, and BYU administration for all their support. They have helped me more than they will ever know! This is 100% my decision and my decision only. It has been quite the journey mentally and physically. But it was time to step down and take time to get myself back in all aspects of life and back to who I really am. I will work harder than I ever have on the basketball court and in my life goals.”
Emery wrote in length but in generalities about things he’s learned through this rough experience. He also shared life advice.
“I promise you, I am human. Basketball is what I do but basketball is not who I am. There is one thing and one thing only that I will ALWAYS stand up for and that is treating people right no matter the circumstance,” he wrote.
“We are all living in this crazy world, I see far too many times where people are living other people’s problems. This way of life is very destructive and toxic. Don't live in regret, live life in determination, betterment, hope and faith.
“This whole experience has helped me grow up a lot and ultimately be a better person and I'm grateful for that. However, I want to make people aware of being careful of what you believe and ultimately what you say about people. Just because you hear something doesn't mean it's the truth.”
(Emery used bold letters in that particular sentence.)
Emery recommends that people not be consumed by other’s lives, problems, gossip and drama, and suggested, “Rise above it!” He recommended refraining from seeking revenge. He advised anyone who needs help to meet with a therapist as he has.
“I have; they have been a huge blessing to help me navigate my life and I will always be grateful for that,” Emery wrote. “It's not a bad thing, we need people to help us through life and there are trained professionals to help us do so.”
Emery concluded by expressing his support of a BYU basketball team that has won five in a row and is off to an 8-2 start without him.
“For now, cheer on our boys!” Emery wrote. “I am so proud of each one of them and they will continue to have a great season.”