James Davis talk about JC decision and the Gophers

Seven-foot senior center James Davis of Minneapolis North will play for Garden City (Kan.) CC next season. Davis did not play as a junior, but emerged as one of Minnesota's top seniors. He'll have to spend two years at the junior college level before he is ready to play for a Division I school. Minnesota is one of the schools on his early list.

James Davis helped lead the Polars to the Minnesota Class AAAA state championship as he averaged 14 points and 14 rebounds. He was named to the 11-man College Basketball News' Minnesota All-State team.

 

His new team, Garden City finished just 15-16 last year and 5-11 overall. They will be coached by former University of Milwaukee-Wisconsin men's basketball assistant Ryan Swanson, who was recently hired to resurrect the program.

 

Here is what James Davis had to tell me during the recent Inner City All-Star Game

 

Was Louisville the school that placed you at Garden City?

 

"That is not true. Garden City was looking at me since the beginning of the year. They had a coaching change, so I kind of backed off them. But, Coach Swanson came up and talked to me personally and my mentor Rick Williams, and we really appreciate it. He showed common courtesy and he brought me down for a visit. We had a lot of fun down there and he showed me some much more than the other junior colleges showed me. Most schools want you to play basketball. But, here, it's school, then basketball. I'm a big fan of kids. They work with elementary schools and I'll be playing with the kids at recess. It's just more than basketball at that school. The other school it was just all basketball. That's what I really liked about Garden City."

 

What others school were you looking at?

 

Indian Hills, Barton County, North Dakota School of Sciences, Colby, College of Southern Idaho, Vincennes and Minneapolis CC.

 

How close were you to going to Louisville and sitting out the season as a partial qualifier?

 

It was something I was thinking about, but I'm a die-hard basketball player and to be sitting out, I didn't think that I could take it. I probably would have ripped my hair out, not gone to school and probably got homesick and came home, if I could not have played basketball. But, here I get to play, so I just decided to go to a junior college for two years and do the right thing and then head back to a Division I school.

 

What is Garden City like?

 

It is bigger than what I expected. I got down there and I thought it would be a small town with cows and horses. It is really a big city. Everybody, and I mean everybody, loves basketball. The whole community is die-hard fans. They care so much about basketball, more than most places. When you go on the road, the fans traveled to see you. That is the biggest thing in the town, and that was what I care most about. I like that a lot.   

 

Have you thought about where you'd like to go after Garden City?

I like the University of Louisville and maybe the U of M.


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