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Spartans Kenny Kaminski, Matt Costello honor fallen teammate

Nov 5, 2012, 11:16 AM EST

Denzel Valentine, Matt Costello, Gary Harris, Kenny Kaminski

Kenny Kaminski is a big-bodied, sharp-shooting freshman at Michigan State this season.

Unfortunately, for him, Kaminski has a bum shoulder, one that kept him out during his senior season in high school and cost him the past three months after he tore a labrum.

And while the progress Kaminski has made in his recovery has allowed him to start shooting the ball again, there’s still a chance the he ends up redshirting this season. Would it be worth wasting a year’s worth of eligibility for a guy that’s not 100% and will be playing behind Adreian Payne and Derrick Nix?

Given those facts, it should make you curious when MLive.com publishes an extensive feature on Kaminski and why he chose the No. 30. Grab a tissue before you read it:

3 and nobody else.

That’s who Michigan State forward Kenny Kaminski had on his mind when at the start of his college career he selected the No. 30 to wear on his chest in memory of a fallen friend.

No. 3 was Dorian Dawkins, who collapsed during a high school game on the Michigan State campus three summers ago and died, a heart defect cutting short a dream at age 14.

As AAU teammates, Dawkins, Kaminski and Matt Costello fantasized about one day playing for the Spartans together. Three years later, as Costello and Kaminski arrived in East Lansing as roommates and a part of Tom Izzo’s recruiting class, they did so with Dawkins with them in spirit.

“He’s always here in my heart,” Kaminski said. “I’m always thinking about him.
“He’s always going to be there and nobody else. 3 and nobody.”

It’s a sad story, but it’s one worth reading and knowing about.

Rob Dauster is the editor of the college basketball website Ballin’ is a Habit. You can find him on twitter @robdauster.