Walker Looks to Lead DePaul

As the only senior heading in the 2009-10 season for the DePaul Blue Demons men's basketball team, Will Walker feels the responsibility to lead his teammates as they try to regroup in the off-season.

Coming off a 9-24 season and a last place finish in the Big East, the DePaul Blue Demons have plenty of room for improvement. Will Walker, the sole rising senior on the team, knows that this is his time to lead.

"The main thing I'm working on right now is trying to work on my leadership and try to inspire the guys to keep working hard," Walker said.

Despite the outcome of last season, Walker remains optimistic for next year and wants to make sure his legacy at DePaul is a better one.

"It is a chance for us to do good," expressed Will. "Even through they haven't seen it yet, but it's really out there. The sky's the limit for our team. It's a really young team, but they're all working hard right now. I just want to keep pushing through this off-season and keep getting better and bring a whole new style of play next year when we come out to play and surprise everybody."

With the likely loss of leading scorer Dar Tucker to the pros, Walker is the team's leading returning scorer after averaging 14.6 points per game last season. Will is also the Blue Demons' leading three point shooter with a 36.8% percentage from beyond the arc last year. With Tucker gone, Walker knows that he'll be drawing opposing teams best defenders in the Fall.

As the DePaul team goes through off-season workouts, Walker finds himself being a vocal leader with his younger teammates.

"I tell them to keep working on their body and their conditioning," said Will. "We really lacked conditioning last year. I think that hurt us the most, especially down low. A lot of our big guys didn't get a chance to play, because they couldn't really last out there on the floor."

Will serves as the voice of motivation with the underclassmen on the team.

"Whenever they're ready to hit that wall I just keep telling them ‘you're not going to play again next year if you hit that wall every day you've got to push through it sometimes'. I think that really inspires them to just keep pushing and keep fighting. Once one of them does it, then the other one doesn't like to see the other one succeed over them, so they keep competing that way too. I try to keep them competing against others, because whoever can compete the hardest, they know that they're going to be the ones that play."

With a sense of urgency going into his senior season, DePaul fans can expect Walker to continue to encourage his mates during this summer.


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