Transfer talks college hoops

By Lucas Deal

Q: What made you transfer from Illinois State to Illinois?

A: I really felt like I needed a new start. I’m pretty fortunate that I got an offer from this program and Coach Weber.

Q: How hard was it to sit out for a year after playing immediately at ISU?

A: It was really hard, especially because of the success we were having. But the coaches made sure I still felt like I was part of the team. Even though I wasn’t playing I was still enjoying myself and having fun.

Q: What is your major and how did you pick it?

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    A: Speech Communications. My advisor told me it was a good major and it’s a broad major, so I thought it would be a good thing to go in to.

    Q: What is the best part about playing in the Big Ten?

    A: It’s physical, and I like playing physical basketball.

    Q: Which road arena has been the most fun to play in thus far?

    A: I liked the United Center, that was a good game against Xavier. I liked the environment too – there were a lot of people there. And it was at home in Chicago.

    Q: Who is the toughest big man to guard in the conference?

    A: That’s a good question. There are a lot of great big men in the conference. You’ve got Brunner at Iowa, Davis at Michigan State, Dials at Ohio State, I can’t put a finger on one.

    Q: What is your best basketball quality, what do you do best?

    A: Probably my post play – that’s pretty much what I do, play down low.

    Q: What is the best advice Coach Weber has given you?

    A: Don’t think so much, just go out there and play. Sometimes I tend to over-think everything and he just tells me to relax and let the game come to me.

    Q: If you could choose one specific skill to take from a teammate, which skill would you choose and why?

    A: Brian Randle’s athleticism. He can jump out the gym and he can run because he’s such a great athlete. If I could add that to my game I would really have something.

    Q: You’ve played more minutes and more quality minutes of late, what do you attribute your play to?

    A: I’ve just tried to go out and play hard. I’ve tried to defend, rebound and run the floor and I’ve tried to finish down low. It’s just been going well.

    Q: Who has the best nickname on the team?

    A: I like Dee’s ‘One Man Fast Break.’ I like it because it’s true, he is fast.

    Q: Who is the weirdest guy on the team?

    A: We’ve got a lot of different characters in on this team; I can’t pick out one guy in particular.

    Q: What do you like to do in your free time?

    A: I just try to relax, watch TV and do a little reading here and there.

    Q: What is your favorite movie or TV show?

    A: My favorite movie is Gladiator and I also like the Rocky series.

    Q: What is your favorite Coach Weber saying or expression?

    A: There are so many, it’s hard to think of one. Probably just the facial expressions he gives me and the rest of us.