Lindenwood ‘Titan’

Lindenwood University alumni takes fruitful athletic and academic experience to compete in new athletic competition television show ‘The Titan Games’

By Brett Auten

Derik Scott described it best.

“It’s like a cage fight on steroids mixed with Greek myth,” he said. 

What Scott is referring to is the new NBC athletic competition show, “The Titan Games,” hosted – and conceived by – the one and only Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.

The 31-year-old Scott is a contestant on the show. He grew up in St. Louis but had a long and fruitful athletic and academic career at Lindenwood University. 

NBC is billing the new show as everyday people getting a once in a lifetime opportunity to compete in epic head-to-head challenges designed to test the mind, body and heart and Scott is certainly up to the task.

Scott was a stellar academic, earning multiple awards, and earned his undergrad degree and his masters in business administration at Lindenwood before heading to Baylor Law School. At Lindenwood, he walked on the men’s swimming and diving team and proceeded to not only earn a scholarship, but become a three-time All-American diver and is still a school record holder in numerous dives.

“Being at Lindenwood, I found out what I was capable of,” Scott said. “Lindenwood propelled me. I knew I had the potential to do a lot of different things and do them well and my time there validated that thought. It gave me the confidence to press forward.”

Jon Lau is currently an assistant coach for the Lindenwood men’s swimming and diving team and was a teammate of Scotts for multiple seasons. 

“Derik was a guy who pushed every aspect of life to the limit,” Lau said. “He was a tremendous athlete, not only in diving but in the weight room, in intramural basketball, even when the team would go and play ultimate Frisbee. He loved competition and he loved to compete in the classroom. He really wanted to succeed in that area and always wanted to achieve the highest possible outcome no matter what he was doing.”

Tom Lucido, of St. Charles, was also a teammate of Scott at the Lindenwood pool and the pair continued to be friends after school.

“I think the positivity that Derick offers is his biggest attribute,” Lucido said. “With him, there are never any barriers and there is never any negativity and that is probably why he has done so well at whatever he’s done.” 

Scott, who just recently moved to California, is a renaissance man. He is a practicing attorney and a personal trainer. His whole life was spent in a gymnastics gym that his parents owned. He won his first national championship at age seven. During his time in St. Louis, he fought as both an amateur and professionally in mixed martial arts and he and his brother teamed up to make it into the Guinness Book of World Records for the most backflips on a Swiss ball between two people in one minute.

“The Titan Games” debuted last week and Scott sat back and watched. Though featured briefly in the intro, his competition debut has yet to air.

“The most comparable thing is having a big MMA fight but this was Hollywoodified, Rockified, and NBCified,” he said. “It is difficult to describe the scale of things. There are 300-foot flames that were alarming to the senses. It looks like superheroes competing against each other.”

Scott was trying out for season 10 of “American Ninja Warrior” when he found out about “The Titan Games.” He was still in the running for “American Ninja Warrior” but once he heard about the new show he switched gears. The field for the show started out with tens of thousands of applicants and was then cut down to around 200 for an NFL-style combine. The results of which whittled the group down to 64 competitors from around the country. The show takes place at the Irwindale Speedway about 45 minutes east of Los Angeles – renamed “The Titan Arena” for the show.

The Scotts are an extremely close-knit family. Derik’s older brothers Shaun and Zeke are his biggest cheerleaders and Scott is dedicating his performance on the show to one of his brothers, Ian, who died in a car accident when Scott was 12. Scott called Ian his role model and that he wakes up every day thinking how he can make him proud.

“The Titans Games” air every Thursday at 7 p.m. on NBC.

CUTLINE:

Cover-Titan1 Submitted photo Derik Scott grew up in St. Louis but had a long and fruitful athletic and academic career at Lindenwood University. 

Cover-Titan2-3 Photos courtesy Don Adams Jr. At Lindenwood, Derik Scott walked on the men’s swimming and diving team and proceeded to not only earn a scholarship, but become a three-time All-American diver and is still a school record holder in numerous dives.