Just about two years ago GBW had a chance to see a very young long-armed kid out Indiana that could truly stroke the ball from deep. Back then Zak Irvin was just happy to be playing basketball and excited that colleges were looking at him. His game is coming full circle as Zak has add quite a few more items to his grocery basket.
"I have really worked hard to become a complete player," he told GoBlueWolverine. "Along with becoming a better rebounder, which I feel that is something that can help my team, on the defensive side of the ball I want to be a lock down defender. I want to guard the other team's best player, and I hate when someone scores on me -- it makes me want to work that much harder."
Zak continues to evaluate his game, especially how he approaches the offensive side of the floor with his play.
"It's fun," he said. "I am really just starting to realize my length and how big I am. I use to hang out on the perimeter but now I am attacking the basket to score as well hitting the offensive glass more. I am starting to run a little point on our team as well."
Irvin is starting to see how he can influence the game in many different ways. Watching him early in this AAU season, Zak has shown a confidence in his game that makes him more comfortable out on the floor. One reason for that is the advice he is beginning to obtain from his future coaches.
"Coach Lavell Jordan is always on me about how I can improve me game. He talks to me about getting stronger, attacking the rim and rebounding more. We have had a close relationship since my freshman year."
With the conversations that the two are having now, they are not just for high school basketball. Zak clearly understands that the dialogue between coach and player has taken on a different tone.
"In my discussions now with Coach Jordan and the entire staff I can tell they are getting me ready for the next level. Since I committed they have talked about what is going to get me better as a player when I step on campus in a few years."
The way Zak has been playing, it was quite clear he would be noticed by others with his all-around production. So recently he received some very good news about his game with an invitation.
"I received a phone call last Thursday from the director of Adidas Nation that I was invited to play against some of the top players in the country. I will be flying out tomorrow at 7 going to Las Vegas."
What does he hope to accomplish out in Vegas?
"I just want to go out and represent my family, my teammates and my area," he said. "I would also like to make a name for myself nationally, play hard and have fun."
As Irvin continues to evolve with his play this summer, clearly the sky is the limit for him.
Irvin reaching "complete player" status
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