Scott, on the left, with the 2nd place winner at the World Series of Poker Main Event.

This summer, Morristown High School Alum Scott Blumstein, Class of 2010, dominated and won the World Series of Poker Main Event in Las Vegas, NV, winning over $8 million. We were able to catch up with Scott to learn more about his experience.

MEF:   Tell us a little bit about your journey since high school?

SB: After I graduated Morristown High School, I attended Temple University in Philadelphia for four years. I had a good college experience and majored in accounting.   Once I graduated, I basically decided that I didn’t want to get a job immediately and that I wanted to try to pursue another path. I also enjoyed playing poker and decided to give it a shot to become a professional poker player. For the first few years, I didn’t have much success but I stayed with it. I finally getting my first big break at the Borgota where I won a poker tournament of 2400 entries winning $200,000.   I had finally gotten my breakthrough and this validated what I was doing. It allowed me the opportunity to chase my goal of becoming a successful poker player. One year later went, I went to Las Vegas for the World Series of Poker Main Event and the rest is history.

MEF: Sounds like you were persistent in following a passion?

SB: I definitely think persistence is important, but I really did not want to become an accountant.   I was close to giving up on following my passion, when I won at the Borgota, This gave me the chance I needed at a perfect time.

MEF: How did your interest in poker come to be?

SB: When I was younger, around the age of thirteen, I remember watching the World Series of Poker Main Event coverage on ESPN. I enjoyed watching the interesting characters and the game appealed to me. We would play poker in middle school with our fathers. There was a poker boom and a lot of people were playing it. I started played more seriously in high school. When I was a sophomore, I would play with the seniors and they would invite me in. At college, I started playing online poker. In April of that year, the government shut down online poker and it became more difficult to play so I became more of a fan. When I was 21 years old, I started to go to casinos and that is when it became a passion of mine.

MEF: What a huge summer for you… .tell us all about that experience?

SB: It was wild. I went to Las Vegas to play in a warm-up tournament and then the Main Event. There were 56 tournaments throughout a two-month span of the summer. Lots of poker is played at the World Series. I went out for the end of the tournament. It was always a dream of mine to play the Main Event and be successful. Anyone can play, you just need the money to enter.

MEF: We were all home watching you. What was that like for you?

SB: It was amazing. Once it started to look like I had a chance to make a run, when it hit under 100 people, I got a little buzz. Everyone started to watch back home.   I can’t put it into words how incredible it felt to have all of the support from the town of Morristown. Everywhere I go in Morristown, everyone says they watched every second of it. I thank them so much.

MEF: What about the experience would people not know that you’d be willing to share?

SB: Not too much. It is truly the best poker tournament in the world. It’s 7 days of 12 hours each day of poker. It truly requires mental stamina to see how long you can continue on. I had to be really focused and it was important that I display patience. It was hard to appreciate when I was there. Also, my mom, who hasn’t been on an airplane in 20 years because she hates flying, came out. That was cool.  With about 16 people left, I was the chip leader and I almost blew it. I made a play we had discussed about not doing. I went all in with not a good hand. I took a hit there and things could have gone differently. I got really lucky a couple of hands later and after that it was smooth sailing. It was a really cool experience. I even had a couple of celebrities reach out to me. The whole thing is surreal! The craziest part for me is that I’m just a normal kid from Morristown who had something change my life so drastically and it can happen in a blink of eye. In the span of one week, unexpectedly everything just got so completely different.

MEF: What did you think you wanted to do when you were back in high school?

SB: So that’s the irony, I really didn’t’ know. High school is weird in that regard. I chose to study accounting in college because I like math and numbers. Looking back at it now, I regret choosing accounting. There are much more interesting fields that inspire me like psychology and teaching.   I feel like it’s hard, at that age, to know what your want to do. If you really got a taste of opportunities that are out there before you went to college, you maybe would go on a different path.

MEF: What was your favorite memory of Morristown High School?

SB: I’m a big sports guy and being on the football team was a cool experience I enjoyed being part of a team with group of guys working toward a common goal. Throughout high school everyone’s goal is to feel belonging and to fit in somewhere. I found that sports.

MEF: What of your success would you attribute to your experiences at the high school?

SB: I think that all of your life there are chances to learn and grow. For my four years at MHS, I did a lot of that. It was a funny time in my life when I was a little lost in the sense that I did not have a real direction in high school. Once I got to college, I did more growing. High school can be a tough environment. Even though they were not the best years of my life, it was part of the process. There were people that influenced me along the way. The teachers at MHS were great and pretty influential. Teachers have influence on students and can make the classroom a creative, strategic and fun environment.

MEF: What advice would you give a MHS student?

SB: The most important is that your time at MHS doesn’t define you. It’s so hard to know that in the moment because why would you think ahead?  If you can find it to understand that everything you do in high school just prepares you for the next allows you to start gaining knowledge which prepares you for life after high school. A lot of kids don’t have the high school experience that they want to have. I hope kids can learn from me that anything is possible.

MEF: If you had known then what you know now, would you have done anything differently in high school?  If so, what?

SB: I would have tried to have been more of myself and not be something I thought I needed to be. The truth is once you get into the real world it doesn’t matter what happened in high school.

MEF: What are your plans now?

SB: That’s a good question. Honestly I don’t know.   That’s the cool part about having something like this happen to you. It’s pretty clear that I don’t confine to any normal rules. For right now, this is all new and still sinking in. Giving myself to beginning of next year to enjoy and live out fantasy of what happened.  I will probably go back and play next year. Poker will always be a part of my life. The cool thing is now it can be less of a part of my life. I can try out some other things.

MEF Sponsors & Partners