To fully prepare for the 2012-13 basketball season, KSR conducted one-on-one interviews with each member of the Kentucky basketball team about their expectations for the team and what they would like to achieve individually. We’ll release two interviews per day throughout the week. Up now: Alex Poythress from Clarksville, TN.
The biggest pressure on this new Kentucky team, the youngest of the Calipari era, is following up last year’s “GR8NESS.” The 2011-12 UK basketball squad finished the season with a 38-2 record and the Wooden NCAA National Championship trophy. It was arguably one of the best college basketball teams of all-time. But Alex Poythress, a highly-touted forward from Clarksville, Tennessee, thinks his team has a shot at winning a second consecutive banner for the University of Kentucky.
“Honestly, I do think so,” Poythress said when asked about Kentucky repeating as NCAA champions. “We have great pieces this year. We have a great team.”
In order for the 2012-13 club to reach its goal of winning #9, Alex Poythress will need to be a star. He’s projected to be the team’s leading scorer, and, with Kentucky’s lack of depth, his versatility will be vital to the team’s success. Cal says he can play Poythress at the 2, 3, or 4 positions.
And Poythress knows that.
“Yeah, I do,” he said when asked if he prides himself on his versatility. “I’m quick enough for the slower people guarding me. I’m strong enough for the smaller people.”
Calipari said he loves the skill level of his young forward, but notes that it is very important for Poythress to maximize his talent. Cal wants to see Alex get his motor to where Michael Kidd-Gilchrist’s was last season. After all, Cal expects the best from everyone.
“He’s different, you know. He expects the best out of you,” Poythress said of playing under Calipari. “He’ll yell at you sometimes, he’ll talk to you like a normal person. As long as you’re doing things right, he’ll be cool.”
Now, if only Poythress can get used to living away from home, he’ll be good to go.
“You just gotta take care of yourself,” Poythress said. “Buy your own toothpaste and stuff like that.”
The life of a UK basketball player isn’t as easy as some believe. Like the general public, they too have to remember to buy toothpaste.
Watch KSR’s entire one-on-one interview with Alex Poythress…
(Shot with an iPhone so the sound is pretty terrible. Turn your volume up. Way up.)