USC Commit Rian Forestier: ‘Just shoot, just keep shooting!’

USC Commit Rian Forestier: ‘Just shoot, just keep shooting!’

By John “Woods” Armwood III

The Texas native and USC commit has proven to be one of the country's most respected and feared seniors on the court, Rian Forestier. She was born and raised in Helotes, Texas, just outside San Antonio. This upcoming season, Forestier is joining one of the most exciting teams in college basketball playing alongside JuJu Watkins, Talia Von Oelhoffen, and Kiki Iriafen. The Trojans are getting a 6’0 relentless scoring machine, with the high motor, tenacity, and intensity to be a great defender in the backcourt. Forestier explains she’s just excited to learn as much of the game as possible from these stars and is willing to do whatever it takes to help this team win. 

“I’m just excited to be able to learn from them and just being in their presence will elevate my game,” Forestier expresses her excitement to be joining USC. “I remember when I did my visit, I was like ‘I’m excited to play with them’. I’m willing to play whatever role I can to contribute to winning, whether that’s on the offense or defense side of the ball, I just want to win.”

Rian Forestier's Basketball Origin

Oftentimes, star players began getting involved in their field at a fairly young age. Forestier was no different, in fact she recalls playing or being surrounded by sports since she could walk. Her mother, Denise Forestier, was a very successful Division I basketball player and her other parent was a star Division I volleyball player. That said, she emphasized in middle school she played six different sports at once, unfortunately she didn’t begin taking basketball seriously until her freshman year. 

“We were always a sports family, I played six sports in middle school,” Forestier explains. “I didn’t take basketball seriously until my freshman year of high school.”

 Denise Forestier has played a pivotal role not only as her mother but as an athlete. Forestier admits that her mom is the reason she initially picked up a basketball. Despite both of them being great at basketball, she’s never had the privilege to see her mother play. However, many of her relatives explain to her it's scary how much they look alike and play alike. She mentions how she finds it fascinating that they mirror each other without ever seeing one another while playing.

“I’ve worked out with her and she's taught me things but I've never actually seen her play,” Forestier emphasizes. “Everyone in my family says it’s scary how much we look alike and play alike. It’s kind of cool the fact we mirror each other without ever seeing one another while playing.”]

Evolution of Forestier’s Game

Many recognize Forestier as one of the most relentless scorers and the No.54 player in the country. Unfortunately, many don’t recognize the work and development she’s put into herself to create the phenom many recognize today. That said, one of the biggest aspects of her game that came the most naturally was her high motor and competitiveness. Growing up, she had older brothers who always tried to defeat her anything, therefore over time this created a huge appetite for healthy competition, which ultimately translated onto the court. 

“The most natural thing that came to me was my motor,” She states. “Always having high energy has always come pretty easy to me. Also, my competitiveness because I generally hate losing in anything.”



One of the biggest things she’s gotten involved in to overall help train her body for basketball was boxing. Before boxing, she admits she would shy away from contact, however since boxing, she believes it’s helped create a level of toughness that wasn’t there. 

“Boxing itself is a great workout, my defense got a lot better because my hand-eye coordination got better,” Forestier says. “I was able to time the ball and move better because of the shape I was in and my physicality has changed so much. Freshman year, I was nervous about contact but I got more physical being able to finish and land on my feet.”

Life’s Bigger Than the Game of Basketball

Although the game of basketball is a lifestyle to many, it doesn’t resemble all of life. The Forestiers realized this and implemented something to impact the basketball world around them. When she was younger, her closest friend attended a workout, however she didn’t come prepared with the right sneakers to play. Naturally, some of the players made jokes and embarrassed her. This leads to her coming home and expressing her lack of interest in the game. From that point forward, the Forestier vowed to never have that be a reason for any young lady to not play the game. 

“My best friend, she went to a basketball workout and she didn't have the correct attire,” Forestier explains her friend’s story. “Sadly, she was made fun of so when she came home she said ‘I don’t think I want to do this anymore’. Granted, this was a higher-ranked player in the country than me and a true sister of mine. My mom and I did more research on it because it should never be a reason someone quits or stops playing the game.”

Eventually, the Forestiers opened up a foundation, “4ward”, so that young girls around the country could perform at the highest level. Especially, in the period when the game of women's basketball is growing rapidly, thanks to Angel Reese and Caitlin Clark. 

Over 85% of Title I women don’t have the correct shoes, meaning they’re in Converse and shoes from Goodwill. The game is growing but we need even more girls playing basketball and if  I can impact the game of basketball or get more girls to play more and give back,  I want to be that person.”

Ryan Forestier’s “Sh3GotGame Moment” 

Before all of the accolades and recognition, like many Forestier didn’t recognize her greatness. She admits that her junior year season catapulted her confidence to the next level. Prior to her junior season, Brandeis High School had a talented veteran team. That said, in her junior year many of these veteran players graduated leaving it to her to carry the torch. In the season opener, she managed to record a 36-point triple-double. At that point, she realized she needed to take the game seriously because this could be a possible career. 

“My Sh3gotgame moment came in my junior year, even though I was getting offers I still didn't think I was that good,” Forestier admits. “My sophomore year, we graduated four of the five starters and in the season opener I had a 36-point triple-double and it instilled confidence in me. I began hooping and realized I could make a career out of this.”

In conclusion, as amazing as Forestier is a player there are tons to still learn and she believes she’s far from developing. The likes of Watkins and other veteran players may help her elevate her game and become even more dangerous as a player. When asked, if there was any advice she’d like to offer to anyone who may resonate or be following her story, she responded:

“You have to work hard and always believe in yourself. I don’t believe anyone can take your confidence or give you confidence, therefore don’t try to be anyone else. You can’t be anyone else, you can only be the best version of yourself. Always be yourself because you’re the best version of yourself !”  

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