Tom Doyle

Former Athletic Director, Author of True Coaching & The Sports Parent Manual, Business Manager of (PPNW)

This book has great ideas and wonderful wisdom for young athletes. The book offers great advice that student athletes need to hear both in high school and when they leave home and venture off to college for the first time. There are many, many grains of wisdom in the book. There are no shortcuts to success.

Marcel is doing ground-breaking work, with experience from inside the world of athletics. His fortitude and foundation has enabled him to leap-frog into the world of informative educational leadership ahead of his time.

Jordan Crawford

Professional athlete (Washington Wizards, Boston Celtics, and Golden State Warriors, and China National Basketball League)

Eric Cooper

President of Basketball DNA,Dream Builders, Team USA Sports, and Dream Builders Integrated

Marcel is fresh off the commencement stage with an international business diploma in one hand and a how-to book for student athletes in the other. The Balance is about having priorities beyond basketball, about building your character and living life as a more balanced individual. It’s about heightening your abilities as a player by taking care of the rest of you. As the mother of three collegiate athletes, two who’ve turned pro, The Balance should be required reading for every player and student who wants to have a post game plan in the multi-billion dollar international sports industry on or off the court!

The Balance by Marcel Smith is a refreshing look at balancing life, school and sports…in that order. A step-by-step guide for aspiring athletes of the next generation is just what the doctor ordered as we see so many student athletes falling by the wayside. With preparation and a handbook like “The Balance”, the student athlete automatically increases his chances to succeed in life and sports. An intuitive look by someone who has excelled at true balance is the best way to learn and mimic the success every student athlete desires. I recommend this book to every junior high athlete playing on the street to Division 1 players trying to figure out how to make the most of this amazing opportunity.


Marcel Smith has grown to be a very intelligent and insightful man.  I met Marcel as an 8-year-old “wanting to be a basketball player” kid.  He was somewhat smaller than many kids his age, but his HEART was bigger than many of the four walls that his existence occupied.  His book “Balance” demonstrates how a student athlete can excel in junior-high, high school, and college. Marcel continues to have a “BIG” heart, and is willing to share this important knowledge with others.  Congrats on his coming out party, as Marcel is not done.  This book will become a must-have to aspiring athletes!!!

Marcel Smith was one of the most driven Players I have ever coached! I first met him when Marcel was in the 5th Grade and you could tell he really wanted to become a great player! I was training some Pro Players, College Players, High School Players and Youth Players! He had a Heart the size of a Lion and was really intense!

Dr. Ray Johnson

Founder of Paul Robinson Academy

​Founder of Ray C. Johnson & Associates

I have been blessed to be in education for over forty-five years.  As the founding principal of The Paul Robeson Academy in Detroit, Michigan, where Marcel attended elementary school, our goal was to provide academic excellence that was multi-dimensional and global in its approach. We sought to empower students to discover their genius by instilling a strong sense of cultural identity, self-discipline, positive expectation, faith, and social justice. Through Marcel’s scholarship, athletic prowess, and uncommon commitment to serve, he represents the human expression of God’s Servant Leader. His thoughtful and provocative book, The Balance will empower thousands. Therefore, I strongly recommend it, which I consider to be a holistic strategy for living.

Mike Rosas

International Speaker and Author

Chaplain of the Houston Rockets

As far back as I can remember, I dreamed of playing basketball. Nothing was going to stop me. I ultimately learned that some things could derail your dreams. The biggest obstacle to my dream did not know how to apply myself in the classroom. The better I’ve become at managing my responsibilities off the basketball court, the better I perform on the court. Creating this handbook will help many student athletes understand The Balance right from the start.

Odis Bellinger

​Founder/Director of Male Responsibility Institute

Marcus Elliot Williams

Professional Athlete, (San Antonio Spurs, Denver Nuggets, Los Angeles Clippers, and Chinese Basketball Association)

Marlon “Smoke” Williamson

College Basketball Coach (University Massachusetts & University of Pittsburgh)

Coach Mike Moore

Creator/ Founder of Moore Management

& OC Pride

Believing in yourself is the first step to any success in life. But that just puts you on your journey. Creating and maintaining ” The Balance” between your passion, responsibility and your spirit is what will keep you prepared for all the obstacles along the way.  No one can fully explain to you all that will be thrown at you as a student athlete unless they have done it, and Marcel has excelled in all aspects.  “The Balance” is the perfect guide to help any student athlete prepare their mind for the Journey

Being a student athlete is not just about your talents as a player. It’s about having the athletic skills & drive, while putting forth the same efforts in the classroom. It can sometimes be challenging to balance the two. I believe it should be a priority to excel academically; success on the court will follow.

Sylvia “SportsMoms” Crawford

President, Going Pro LLC

Founder, HOOP (Help Out Other People) non-profit community development

The Balance is a handbook with the recipe for student athletes to prioritize and build their lives while chasing their dreams. It casts light on many different ‘ingredients’ that go into a successful student athlete’s life that need polishing for future opportunities.

 The Balance begins with self-examination; understanding human life’s simplicity and also the power of a made up mind. This book also provides insight about how being a better person can translate to sports and academics. The Balance that the student athlete requires isn’t just between academics and sports but also with family and friends, recreation and most important character.  This book shares stories from the author's journey to success as a student athlete from Metropolitan Detroit and his experiences, and explanations why certain principles and inspirations are the very embodiment of an aspiring student athlete reaching for his or her dream.

Upon completion of this book, the readers will be equipped to become better student athletes and achieve their goals. 

Willie Burton

Current NBA Record Holder

​​​International Ambassador to Sports and Education

DJ Augustine

NBA Player (Charlotte Bobcats, Indiana Pacers, Chicago Bulls, Toronto Raptors, Detroit Pistons, and Oklahoma City Thunder)

Outstanding, dedicated, and committed are three words that describe Marcel Smith. These adjectives describe the effort that he puts into his studies and on the court.  As a collegiate basketball coach, I emphasize the significance of working hard on and off the court to all of our players. Marcel has maintained that excellence that’s wanted and expected of ALL student athletes.

Balancing school and playing sports is extremely important because we want all of our players to be well rounded men, once their playing days are complete. As a coach, you want a team of players that are focused on improving in all aspects of their lives.  Having been blessed the opportunity to coach such a great example of what a student athlete should be, is humbling and a great honor!!!

Life is a balancing act.  Success as a student athlete comes in the form of learning how to multitask and manage their time.A student athlete takes on the rolls and responsibilities of a professional athlete but also is required to be a full time student.This is a skill that many struggle with but if learned they will be able to manage their families, jobs and their lives without any problems.  It is one of the most important benefits from being a student athlete at the college level.