Monday, November 29, 2010
Basketball season is in full swing again, and do I ever have high hopes for a certain crew of boys in blue.
After bowing out early from the run for a title last year, these guys are hungry for a championship.
I was able to sit down with one of the returning players to discuss the team’s summer workout regimen and what he sees as their keys to success. Entering the season at a career-high 4 feet 6 inches, Luke Dunlap provided an insightful assessment of this year’s shot at a fourth-grade title for the Saints of west Lawrence.
River City Jules: You spent a good part of the summer working on Mario Kart. How do you think this will impact your season?
Luke: I also rode my bike some.
RCJ: True. And you did beat me in at least one game of H-O-R-S-E.
Luke: Yep. And you still owe me $5 from it.
RCJ: You will see that as soon as your NCAA eligibility has expired. I can’t afford to jeopardize your shot at a scholarship this early in your career.
RCJ: Last year your team achieved a perfect record of 0-8. After taking advantage of the off-season to work out with your teammates this summer, I imagine you all are faster and stronger than ever.
Luke: I guess.
RCJ: What do you think will propel you to a turnaround this season?
Luke: We need to work on defense.
RCJ: Anything more specific?
Luke: We need to score more points.
RCJ: So you need to figure out how to keep the other team from scoring as much … and find a way to score more points than they do.
Luke: Yeah. It would be easier if the other teams would quit taking the ball from us when we have it.
RCJ: I imagine it would, but, then again, I’m no expert. I have noticed, though, that a motivational pregame video really gets the Jayhawks and their fans pumped up. Have you considered putting something together?
Luke: Well, we could all watch “The Dramatic Chipmunk” on Dad’s iPhone. That’s pretty funny.
RCJ: Speaking of your coach, has he recommended any special diet? High protein? Low-carb?
Luke: I think someone’s stealing all the Reese’s peanut butter cups from my Halloween candy while I’m at school.
RCJ: What other adjustments have you made?
Luke: Dad won’t let me have shorts with pockets anymore, so I can’t run with my hands in them.
RCJ: Anything else in particular we fans need to be on the lookout for from you?
Luke (smiling): Pull my finger.
The rest of the interview is not important. What does matter, however, is that these guys have moved past last season and are focused on what is ahead. Blood, sweat, Gatorade and maybe, just maybe, a win this time around.