Vaught: Q&A with Kyle Wiltjer part 2

Part two of Larry Vaught's interview with Kentucky freshman big man Kyle Wiltjer

Question: Is it hard to adjust to his minutes on the court fluctuating so much early in the season?

Kyle Wiltjer: "I was fine with it, I just try to stay positive and work hard every day in practice. I don't even worry about my minutes. I just worry about the team winning and we got the wins so I was happy."

Question: Are you trying to rebound more?

Wiltjer: "I am just trying to show Coach (John Calipari) the things he wants to see. That and the defensive end has been the main focus on me most days, so I am just working to get better in those areas. The thing Coach wants to see is progress and I?have definitely shown the effort in the last couple of games. I just have to show the things he wants. Just do the positive things. Take a charge. Little things like that. Coach wants to see us working and doing things he is asking us to do."

Question: Are you surprised he's asking you to do those things?

Wiltjer: "That is the one of the main things you have to do as a big guy. It's tougher playing defense at this level. The guys are bigger and stronger. You just have to know where you are on the court so you can help play good team defense. Guys have my back, especially when you have a tremendous shot blocker like Anthony (Davis). That helps us a lot. Coach just emphasizes angles, getting a hand on the ball. Things like that."

Question: Did you have to play defense in high school?

Wiltjer: "You had to worry about it.?I actually had a really good defensive school. We worked a lot on one-on-one defense, but getting used to the college level is a different experience."

Question: Does it feel good to have a home game against Radford tonight after being in New York and Connecticut for three games?

Wiltjer: "It is always good to be back in Lex, back at home. It kind of gets our feet under us and glad to be here to practice more."

Question: Has your diet/body changed much since you have been in Lexington?

Wiltjer: "I get in the weight room with coaches. We have team meals. A more balanced diet and stuff like that. Protein shakes after practice. Even though we run, we still don't want to lose that weight. Just an adjustment at the college level that has been fun."

Question: Did having mononucleosis during the summer set you back on your weight/strength?

Wiltjer: "It was only about three or four weeks, so it really didn't hinder my progress at all. I did not lose any weight because we have great food here. I worked with the coaches a lot and when I?got back I did a lot of conditioning and stuff like that. It really didn't hurt me at all."

Question: What does senior Darius Miller mean to this team on and off the court?

Wiltjer: "We look at him as a leader. He has been here four years and done this and done that. Having experience like that along with the sophomores (Jones and Doron Lamb) who played in the (NCAA) tournament last year, just gives us great experience and people we can look up to and show us what to do."

Question: Do you appreciate Miller's overall play more now than when you just watched him on TV?

Wiltjer: "Most definitely. Witnessing it first hand is a lot better than watching it on TV because you don't get to watch the behind the scenes stuff like practice. Just seeing those guys work every day in practice and how hard they work really shows their leadership and he definitely is our leader."


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