He's an avid athlete who splits his time between cross country, basketball and track. He says like many Hoosiers basketball has a special place in his heart. "It's just special here in Indiana. It's just--growing up since first grade, kindergarten really, shooting--something special about the game," says Michael.
His basketball coach says he plays an important role on the team. "Michael is definitely the guy that is the energy guy--the communicator. Anytime we're at practice where we were in a lull or we'd come off a bad game, we could always count on Michael to be the pick me up," says Levi Carmichael.
Michael's energies aren't limited to the basketball court, though. "He's always a big dreamer and he comes up with these ideas and I keep thinking, 'how are you going to do this, Michael?' But Michael has a lot of faith and he's taught me a lot about faith, too," says Beverly Hartman, Michael's mom.
The Backpack Snack program is a brainchild of Michael's. "Basically we go and shop for food and we pack these backpacks full of food for kids and families who wouldn't have what I would like to call a solid meal over the weekend," explains Michael.
His community efforts don't stop there. "He also did a coat drive and raised 500 coats for kids in our community, so he's a real heart for his community," says Chad Stowers, Michael's youth minister.
In the fall Michael will head to Cincinnati Christian University. "He's going into youth ministry, which I think is a perfect fit for him because he really has a heart for service and wanting to be that role model for the kids and help kids out," says Hartman.
Michael's youth minister thinks he's an excellent role model for others. "Kids know that he's a leader. They look up to him, whether he knows it or not, they're watching him," says Stowers.