It’s been a long, arduous road for Florida State guard Braian Angola-Rodas to get where his is now.
He grew up in a small town close to Villanueva, Colombia, and lived there with his parents and two sisters until 2012 when he left Colombia to come to the United States and play basketball at Findlay Prep high school.
“I came from Colombia in 2012, and when I came I didn’t speak any English,” Angola-Rodas said.
“The only that I knew how to say was ‘hey, how are you.’ That was basically it. I went to Findlay prep in Nevada. Then I had to go to prep school in L.A.”
Leaving your family behind and traveling across the world to live in a different country is a tough task for anyone, but it’s especially tough for a teenager. He had decided to go the junior college route when it got a lot tougher.
“I decided to go to junior college, but the year that I was going to go to junior college my dad passed away,” Angola-Rodas said.
“So I wasn’t planning to come back to the United States. It was over, but my mom talked to me. I talked to my family, and just decided to come back.”
Making that decision to leave his family behind and come back to play basketball was the toughest decision he’s ever had to make.
“It was really, really hard because I have two sisters and my mom, they’re by themselves back home,” Angola-Rodas said.
“It was the hardest decision of my life, but my dad always wanted me to be where I I’m at right now, and I think he would be pretty proud of me.
“If I finish my career in the United States and graduate, I feel like that’s going to open the doors for my sisters. Help them come to the United States and graduate too.”
He enrolled at Northern Idaho, and his play started attracting offers from a lot of the top schools in the country. He averaged 21.4 points, 6.5 points, and 4.3 rebounds per game during the 2015-2016 season, and that’s when FSU got involved.