Adams Ready to Lead

FOX Sports NEXT caught up with Avondale (Ariz.) Westview 2014 center Andre Adams at the Pangos Summer Sweet Sixteen to discuss his recruitment, recent growth spurt, and more...

Avondale (Ariz.) Westview 2014 center Andre Adams was out at the Pangos Summer Sweet Sixteen tournament, putting in the effort to make an impression the court.

"I just want to show that I work hard. Defense is probably where my strength as a player is; I really like defense, I'm more aggressive when I play it. I like blocking shots and making people mad," he laughed.

The tournament was just one stop in the busy off-season for Adams, who has been working to improve his game.

"Through the spring and summer, I've been training and I go to weight lifting, where my coach trains me almost every day. He just makes sure I keep working hard," he said.

Something else that the 6'8", 180 lb. prospect has had to get used to? His growth spurt.

"I grew five inches from my freshman year. I've always been tall, but as I get taller, I get better. I went to the doctor after I sprained my ankle and he said that the plates in my ankles haven't come together, so he expects me to grow more," he said.

Though he hasn't picked up his first offer quite yet, the center has been hearing from many Pac-12 programs, including Arizona, UCLA, Oregon State, and Arizona State, as well as New Mexico State and San Diego State. Adams says his mother, who is "only 6'3", has taken the reigns on his recruitment.

"Everything goes through my mom and my coach. I don't want to get big-headed about anything. I'm taking it slowly. I have my mom, my coach, and my teammates to help me out. My teammates support me in everything I do," he said.

Though he'll take his time exploring his options, he knows he'll continue to look at his mother for guidance.

"I'm very close with my mom. I guess you could say I'm a momma's boy," he laughed. "I didn't really have my dad around, so I have my mom and my dad wrapped into one. It's actually pretty cool.

"My mom just told me that she'll be fine with whatever I want to do. She tells me to have fun and to not get big-headed about anything. That's how many people mess up, they don't care about the game anymore. For me, it's just about playing," he said.

Proximity also won't likely be an issue for Adams.

"As long as I have my family with me and supporting me, I don't care where I go, as long as I get to play," he said.

Though he played football his freshman year, Adams quickly gave it up and put all of his athletic energy into basketball, his passion.

"If I didn't play basketball, I don't know what I'd do. Basketball is my everything. I play every day. I still look up videos of past seasons, both at my school and from the NBA, to learn. Playing is just fun. It feels like I'm at peace with everything. It's humbling every time I go out on the court; it's not something I take for granted. I know I still have a lot to work on, too," he said.

Adams may not have grown up cheering for a particular program, but there is a player that he admires.

"I just love the game. Kevin Durant is the guy I look up to. He has my similar body structure and he plays with heart. He's an all-around good player," he said.

For now, Adams is focusing on his upcoming season and helping his team rebuild after losing ten seniors. Adams, who will return on Varsity this season, is ready to step up and be a leader.

"I think the season is going to be good. There are only five of us returning, but it's going to be fun because we have younger guys coming up to play with us. I just make sure everyone is working hard. If someone isn't, I have to jump on them. How you practice is how you play and if you practice hard, you'll play hard," he said.

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