St. Louis Eagles Saturday: Tyler Speaketh

On the court, he's tough to the point of being almost certifiable. Off the court, he's been a bit tentative speaking about his recruitment.<br><br> Hansbrough changed all that with this candid interview with Eric Bossi.


When he steps on the court, Tyler Hansbrough --the six-foot-nine stud and everybody’s All-American from Poplar Bluff (MO) High -- is almost certifiable.

Sure, it has almost become passé to talk about how hard Hansbrough plays. It’s gotten to the point that he’s getting labeled as an “effort” guy. There isn’t necessarily anything wrong with that, but it seems as if people are forgetting -- if not failing to notice -- that he is pretty skilled too.

Regardless of reputation, he takes his team onto the court and gives them somewhere in the neighborhood of 30 points and 10 rebounds two or three times a day in the summer. It wasn’t any different at the St. Louis Eagles Invitational. Hansbrough backed up his 33 Friday night points with 33 and 24 point outings on Saturday.

The usually reserved big man also took a little time to break down what he is thinking about colleges.

Who is still in the picture and how do they stack up?

“The schools that are left would be Missouri, North Carolina, Kansas and Kentucky. I haven’t really ranked them yet but it will be soon after I take my unofficial to North Carolina.”

Why an unofficial to North Carolina?

“Well, my dad wants to go out and see the campus. He’s seen all of the other campuses so he wants to see this campus.”

Tell us your feelings on Missouri.

Missouri- “I like that it’s close to home and I like the players and coaches.”

Talk about the local pressure to pick Missouri.

“There is a lot of pressure to go there but I think I can handle it well and I am going to what’s best for me. I think he can take the pressure if I don’t go to Missouri.”

What about North Carolina?

“I like Coach Williams a lot and I like their tradition and their staff and their players. It’s just everything they have to offer and their tradition man, add all of the great players that come back to play there you get to meet al the pros who’ve played there.”

And Kentucky?

“Kentucky, I really liked the town a lot. I like Coach Smith, the players and the tradition there. I just like their style.”

And finally, how about Kansas:

“Kansas, you’ve got the tradition and the players. It’s closer to home and it’s a real good place to play ball if you really look at all of the tradition. Also Coach Manning’s there, and they are really going to help you out if you go there.”

What is your preferred style of play?

“I think an up and down style, a little bit. I think that would help out a lot.”

Who do you feel plays the closest to that preferred style?

“I think North Carolina would probably fit me the best.”

Did one visit stand out more than any other?

“I liked all of my visits. I liked Kansas’s a lot because I liked all the players there and I liked North Carolina’s and Kentucky’s a lot. I liked all three of those real well.”

How do you feel about where you fit in nationally?

“So far I think I am playing pretty good. I think I am going to keep improving as I get used to the competition. I really think I’ll get better.”

Could you make a decision if you had to today?

“Yeah I think so, I could pick somewhere.”

Who would that be?

“Uhhm, I’m not saying that.”

How about the whole process with coaches. Is it tiring?

“Yeah sometimes but they can’t really call me all that much so it is harder than my coaches than it is on me.”

What do you think about all of the interviews and calls from Internet writers?

“I don’t mind that. Sometimes it does bother me. But, most of the time I just talk to them and try to have fun.”

Anybody out there you want a piece of, or want to play with?

“Not necessarily, but I’d like to play with another known big man who can play inside so I can play outside some. Possibly.” (ed.’s note, Hansbrough did later admit he is looking forward to doing battle with Richard Hendrix next weekend in New Orleans.)

Do you pay attention to who the other school’s are recruiting?

“Yeah, I watch. It really doesn’t affect me though. Like Kansas got a five man, they got C.J. Giles who can play the five. I’d be able to play just the four and would be able to rotate in and out.”

What type of playing time are you looking for?

“I want to go somewhere where I can see immediate playing, a lot as a freshman. I want to start, but I don’t want anything given to me either.”

What are your goals for your senior year?

“This summer, I just want to be the best player I can. Just improve my game and play against the best competition. Next Winter I want to win state again, and the McDonald’s All-American game would be nice.” Top Stories