Every week, 12th Man On Campus brings you a Q&A with an Aggie student-athlete or coach. This week, junior hoopster Bryan Davis was kind enough to take a few questions as the Aggies prepared to host Arizona on Friday night in the Big 12-Pac 10 Hardwood series, one of the biggest non-conference home games in recent memory.
Q: Do you feel like the team needs to redeem itself after the way the Arizona game went last year?
BD: Yeah I feel like we do need to redeem ourselves. Last year, we didn’t come out and play as well as we should have in the second half, and we have a good opportunity to come out here and put together 40 minutes on Friday.
Q: The Arizona crowd got into it a lot last year, so are you excited to get them at your place this year?
BD: Actually, I think everybody was looking forward to playing them at their house last year. Just being at home is a plus for us so we can be in front of our fans. Overall as a team, everybody is pretty much looking forward to playing them.
Q: What kind of atmosphere are you guys expecting here on Friday night?
BD: I’m hoping for a pretty good basketball atmosphere. We haven’t had a whole lot of good turnouts lately, but Arizona is a good basketball school. I think our fans will come out and support us.
Q: We’ve seen a couple of times so far this season that you guys have made just about every free throw toward the end of the game. Is that some mental toughness that you’ve improved since last year?
BD: I think it’s mental toughness, and the fact that we’re the type of team that, when it comes down to it and we have to hit those free throws, we’re going to hit them. We have to be more consistent with it throughout the game, though, so we don’t get in those situations. We need to knock our free throws down earlier in the game, because we missed a lot of free throws during the Tulsa game.
Q: Do you feel like you guys learned some things in the South Padre tournament that will be beneficial on down the road?
BD: A loss is never good, but (losing to Tulsa) was definitely a wake-up call for us. It let us know that anybody can be beaten. Everybody in our circle, in our team, we all know that we’re going to be good. So, that was a wake up call telling us we have to be better and more consistent during the whole game and not just during five- and 10-minute spurts. We have to play a full game.
Q: If you could grade yourself thus far, what would your grade be?
BD: Probably about a C+.
Q: How do you get up to B+ or A?
BD: I need to be more consistent and limit my turnovers. I also need to be more of a leader on the court, and off of it, also.
Q: Do you consider yourself a mentor to some of the other big men on the team?
BD: Yeah, I feel like I’m mentor to them. Sometimes you have to be more than vocal with them—you have to lead by example and let them see you doing the things the right way.
Q: Do you see a lot of potential in Denzel Bowles and David Loubeau?
BD: There’s a lot of potential in those guys. Denzel is really showing some good things, and David has really come a long way.