EXCLUSIVE - Getting To Know David Travers

Two weeks ago Georgia State Basketball announced their 2011 early period signing class. With six seniors on the roster the Panthers will have the luxury of signing a lot of talented prospects this year. Included in the early signing class was RJ Hunter, T.J. Shipes, Cameron Solomon, and David Travers. We spoke exclusively with Travers about his recruitment and decision to play for Georgia State.

David Travers is a point guard prospect from Carlsbad, California. As a Junior last season he averaged 12 points, 7 assists, and 3 steals at La Costa Canyon High School. His team made won their section championship and made it to the second round of the state playoffs while finishing the year ranked 17th in the state of California. One of the better performances of his career thus far came in the opening round of the state playoffs in which he scored 20 points and dished out 7 assists. I got the chance to sit down with David some and talk about what sold him to come and play from Georgia State as well as some of the things in his life off the court.

Atlanta, Ga is certainly a long way away from Encinitas, California... What would say is the biggest reason you chose to go all the way to Georgia to play college basketball? What drew you the most?
First, I have to give credit to the coaching staff for making the basketball program extremely appealing. When I first started talking to them and throughout the recruiting process, I realized all the coaches’ personalities fit with mine and that they were the type of coaches I would want to work with for four years. To be honest, when I flew out there to meet with the coaches in person I didn’t know what to expect about the school. Throughout the day, I saw the city, walked around campus, and met the players and people that make up the GSU campus. At the end of the day, it was just the most appealing University and the best fit for me.

When did you first hear about Georgia State University?
I first heard about GSU when Coach Hunter got the job. I started reading articles about him and watching games of his former team on YouTube to see how they played. I realized quickly that his fast paced offense, numerous styles of defenses, and the way he coaches and yells during games was a great fit with how I was taught to play throughout my high school career. That made it an easy choice and I am really excited about the program.

Have you spoken to any of the other recruits that signed with Georgia State last week?
Yes. I took my official visit with both R.J. Hunter and T.J. Shipes. Over the course of the short weekend we were already close friends and figured that we will be great teammates as each of us has a certain style of play that compliments the others. Not to mention we always talk on twitter.

Who do you idolize as a player? Is there someone you try to mold your game after?
I wouldn’t say that there is just one person that I try to mold my game after, but I try to take all different aspects of players’ games and piece them together and make my own unique style. For example, I loved watching Kemba Walker play last year and watching his quickness with the ball. As a point guard, I will most likely always be the smallest person on the floor which means I have to have a repertoire of moves and the ball skills to perform those moves. I study a lot the ways Steve Nash and Chris Paul use their floor vision to look off defenders and deliver a solid pass to put their teammates in the best scoring position possible. Lastly, I try to always have Kobe Bryant’s focus, competitiveness, work ethic, mental toughness, and footwork when going into a game.

What would you say are your strengths as a player? And your weaknesses?
My strengths as a player are definitely leadership, floor vision, and basketball IQ. I was never much of a follower when I was young and my AAU and high school coach have done a great job with teaching me how to lead a team over the past four years. My floor vision is another strength that I will use quite often in Coach Hunter’s “up and down the floor” style of play. My basketball IQ is probably my biggest strength. I have watched, learned and studied so much basketball over the years of my life that I really have built up a high “basketball IQ”. As far as weaknesses go, there is always room for improvement in every category, but right now I am currently doing a lot of ball handling and weight lifting to prepare for next season at GSU.

Academics is something that you have said is very important to you. How did that impact your decision to play at Georgia State?
Georgia State has a very well-respected business school so I was happy that the school met my academic goals, as well as being a great fit for me in other ways.  When I went out to visit I met with the director for academic assistance and the team academic development advisor and was very happy with what I learned about GSU academics.

Your website is very impressive. On there it says you want to study business. Do you know what, outside of basketball, you would like to do as a career? 
I know that having a business degree will help prepare me for a future career, whatever that may be, but I don’t have a specific career in mind at this time.  I obviously love basketball but I’m also a songwriter-performer, so combined with a business degree, it’s hard to know right now where that may lead me.

You have had the opportunity to travel and play basketball internationally. What did you gain from that experience?
I was quite young in almost every experience I have had internationally but I remember two specific things about basketball overseas. First, they are extremely strong on fundamentals in every aspect of the game. Second, I didn’t speak any language besides English but basketball is a language in and of itself, and I always had a great experience.

Thanks so much to David for taking the time to answer our questions. Georgia State will sign another class of players April 18th. Be sure to stay locked in to Panthersville.com throughout the season for Georgia State basketball recruiting coverage.

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