InDepth and UpClose With Korie Lucious

One of the focal points of Michigan State's 2008 incoming recruiting class is point guard Korie Lucious of Milwaukee (WI) St. Pius XI. On the eve of a critical game for first place in the Catholic League standings, Lucious talks his senior season and what he expects when he hits East Lansing.

MILWAUKEE, WI -- One of the focal points of Michigan State's 2008 incoming recruiting class is point guard Korie Lucious of Milwaukee (WI) St. Pius XI.

Lucious was the subject of some off-the-court controversy including a Sports Illustrated feature story when he transferred from Milwaukee (WI) Rufus King to St. Pius XI along with five of his AAU teammates, a move that raised eyebrows and sent tongues wagging in the Milwaukee hoops community.

Since that time, Lucious, who has been ranked as Milwaukee's top schoolboy player since the 7th grade, has put the move in his rear view mirror and has St. Pius just one game out of first place in the Catholic League.

Lucious gave MSU fans a preview of what he could do when he and AAU teammate Delvon Roe lit up the Izzo Shootout, an summer hoops event in East Lansing that was covered extensively by GSN.

On the eve of a critical game for first place in the Catholic League standings, GSN caught up with Lucious and talked about his senior season and what he expects when he hits East Lansing.

GSN: Congratulations on a big win Friday (defeating Kettle Moraine 63-53, Lucious scored 21 points) that puts your team just one game out of first in the Catholic League standings.

KL: "Yeah, (thank you), that's right. We play the team that's in first place (Catholic Memorial) Monday night. This is a big game for us. Everybody's excited, the players, the whole school, our parents, everybody."

GSN: Have you been keeping an eye on Michigan State, seems like they're having a pretty good year?

KL: "Yeah, they are. I was just up there the weekend they played Michigan about two weeks ago."

GSN: So do you visualize yourself wearing the Green-and-White next season and think about what you might be able to accomplish working with Kalin Lucas next season?

KL: "Actually, I think we're going to be pretty good next year with me, Kalin and Travis (Walton) in the backcourt. Then we've got Delvon (Roe) and Marquise (Gray) coming back so I think we should be pretty good."

GSN: Have you noticed how Kalin (Lucas), as a freshman, has been able to fit right in and in some cases, take over a game for long stretches at a time? How does that affect your confidence in what you might be able to do at the collegiate level?

KL: "Yeah, I have noticed that and basically, me and Kalin, our games are kind of similar. We're both kind of small for our position and we both like to score a lot. I also know that I can pass and get other people involved, so basically, that's going to be my main focus for next year.

I just want to come in and be a good point guard. My goal is to average at least seven assists or better, so I'm not really going to focus on scoring - if the opportunity is there, I'm going to score - but my goal is to get other people involved first."

GSN: What is Coach Izzo saying about what you need to work on as you come to the next level?

KL: "Well he's basically telling me that I need to work on becoming more of a vocal leader on the court because the point guard is like the quarterback in football, you've got to control the team, you've got to control the tempo of the game and whatever. He wants me to get ready to become a leader and I've got to get started on that now basically."

GSN: When you look at the class that is coming in with you to Michigan State, what do you think the three of you will be able to add to the mix when you show up this fall?

KL: "Well, I mean in Delvon (Roe) and Draymond Green, they're both like 6-foot-8 wings that can also play the block and they can step out and shoot the three or the mid-range (jumper) so it's going to be hard for other teams who really don't have big men like that.

Most teams, they're big men are going to be slower than Delvon and Draymond so if they try to step out on them they can just drive around them. That's going to open up a lot of stuff for us and I think, because of that, we can have a run at the National Championship next year."

GSN: It used to be that freshmen didn't get to play a whole lot and in some past seasons they were even ineligible to play. Now, freshmen are expected not only to come in and contribute, but in many cases they're relied upon heavily. How do you feel about that?

KL: "That's exciting, that's going to give me a chance to show everybody what I can do as a player. Me, as well as Delvon and Draymond, we're just going to come in and do what we can to try to help the team win."

GSN: So back to your senior season at St. Pius, with a big game coming up (tonight against Catholic Memorial who earlier dealt St. Pius one of their two losses) how do you feel about your chances to tie for first and then make a run at a state title?

KL: "We've got a good chance. We're comiing together after we played the New York team, Lincoln (Brooklyn (NY) Lincoln blasted St. Pius 89-56 in the HoopHall Classic), we played them and I thought we played hard and we played together as a team.

Ever since then, we've been on a roll, we've just been playing very good. but we took a loss to Catholic Memorial, the first time we played them. We played good that game, they just got lucky basically, but we're playing together right now and I think we've got a good chance at winning a Championship, if we just continue to play hard and play together as a team."

GSN: Well this is your chance to get back at Memorial for the earlier loss so you guys have to bring it (tonight.)

KL: Yeah, this is it, and I know for a fact that we're going to bring this one home.

GSN will keep you updated on the progress of Korie Lucious' season as this exciting incoming freshman is a part of a bright future for Spartans basketball.

Stay tuned to GSN to keep up-to-date on all the incoming freshmen and MSU prospects. You can also see the latest headlines daily via RSS feed by viewing the recruit hoops tracker.

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