Wolfpack Player Notables And Quotables

RALEIGH, NC -- NC State players met with the media earlier last week to discuss the upcoming season, and here are some of their thoughts on this year's team and their teammates.

Redshirt Freshman Point Guard Farnold Degand
Hometown: Boston, Mass.
Vitals: 6-3/170

Team's Funniest Nickname: Lil Saint (Simon Harris)

Teammate who will surprise this year: Courtney Fells

When I first met Coach Lowe, I thought: "He's much shorter in person."

Farnold Degand
An interesting thing nobody knows about me is: "I can play the piano."

Have they ruled on if you can play this year or not?
"I haven't heard. I heard that they went through the stages of trying to get the appeal and they've been putting up a good fight but we haven't heard yet."

They are still trying to get you to play this year?
"Yes, exactly."

What is your impressions of the coaching staff?
"They are great, it's full of point guards so that's definitely great for me. For the most part everybody seems really cool and down-to-earth."

Senior Guard Engin Atsur
Hometown: Istanbul, Turkey
Vitals: 6-4/200

Nickname: The Turk

Team's Funniest Nickname: Toast (Bartosz Lewandowski)

When I first met Coach Lowe, I thought: "He was very positive."

Do you think folks are selling you short at point guard?
"I don't know why it's a concern because I've did it before and I did it here at NC State."

Is it different in a good way or different in a bad way?
"Definitely a positive way. We're loving it, and we love our coaches. We love the change. Everything seems really positive around here."

Thoughts on Courtney Fells:
"He's a great player, and if you look at his high school stats. He really knows how to play, and he didn't get much of a chance last year. I think he's going to get a chance to prove himself this year."

Freshman forward Dennis Horner
Hometown: Linwood, N.J.
Vitals: 6-9/215

Nickname: D-Horn

Dennis Horner
Team's Funniest Nickname: Red (Trevor Ferguson)

When I first met Coach Lowe, I thought: "This is going to be an exciting year."

Teammate who will surprise this year: Courtney Fells

An interesting thing nobody knows about me is: "I love to sing in the shower."

What are your thoughts on NC State?
"It's a great school, great campus. I love everything about it. I love the guys, I love coach Lowe and the whole new staff."

Coming in, did you expect the type of role you may have this year?
"When I first committed, no. Ever since then the two other freshmen left, we don't know about Brackman, and with Ced going to the NBA. I'll probably get some time."

Where will they use you this year?
"I'm playing a little bit of a four in the offense because we're lacking some size here."

What's your current size and weight?
"I'm close to 6'9, 215 or 216."

Sophomore Guard Courtney Fells
Hometown: Shannon, Mississippi
Vitals: 6-4/194

Nickname: C. Fells

Team's Funniest Nickname: Lil Saint (Simon Harris)

When I first met Coach Lowe, I thought: "Of having fun this year because that was what he stressed the most."

Teammate who will surprise this year: Brandon Costner

My most embarrassing moment was: "When we lost to Carolina and Seton Hall by more than 20 points."

Does this change to Lowe generate more excitement with the fans?
"Yea, because it will be different. Coach Sendek was here for ten years I think, and they ran the slow-paced offense. This year I think everything is going to be more uptempo and fast-paced."

What type of role do you see for yourself?
"I really don't know. One thing I want to do is dedicate my all to the team. I'm all about the team."

How important to you was the return of coach Harris?
"Coach Harris coming back was a big key for me because I was going to open up and take a visit to LSU and maybe Texas. With him coming back that threw away everything. I just wanted to stay here and be with him because he's the one that brought me in."

Junior Guard Gavin Grant
Hometown: The Bronx, New York
Vitals: 6-7/212

Nickname: Shane

Team's Funniest Nickname: Osmosis Jones (Farnold Degand)

When I first met Coach Lowe, I thought: "What a sharp brother!"

Gavin Grant
Teammate who will surprise this year: Bryan Neiman

An interesting thing nobody knows about me is: "I'm baaaallliin!"

Will Engin be able to handle the point guard position?
"If he's not we have plenty of other guards. We'll move him to two. He's the best shooter on the team anyways. I think Engin's going to be perfectly fine pushing the ball."

Does it matter to you at all that Sidney Lowe is an African-American?
"He coached in the NBA. I played for an African-American coach, I played for a hispanic coach all through high school, I've played for white coaches. If you know basketball you know basketball. I don't think your race has anything to do with it."

Did you know much about NC State when you were a kid?
"No I did not know much about NC State... the first time I heard about North Carolina State was when Julius Hodge said he was committing to North Carolina State when I was a freshman in high school."

Did you follow the coaching search much and did you explore your options?
"I didn't follow it at all. If they would have got a coach that I didn't want I would have transferred. When they were talking about coach Beilein I was like, he's Herb. It's the same coach. If they would have got coach Beilein I would have probably transferred."

Did you have schools in mind at that point?
"Yeah, I was probably going to head to Pittsburgh or Villanova. Somewhere in the Big East."

Redshirt Freshman Forward Brandon Costner
Hometown: W. Orange, New Jersey
Vitals: 6-8/230

Nickname: Big Lazy

Team's Funniest Nickname: Osmosis Jones (Farnold Degand)

When I first met Coach Lowe, I thought: "This could be fun."

Teammate who will surprise this year: "Myself, because I was hurt last year."

An interesting thing nobody knows about me is: "I can sing."

How much more relaxed around here is it? Or is it?
"I wouldn't say it's more relaxed. It's about the same. I think we realize we have our work cut out for us this year, but I think that we could have a good season as long as we work."

Will you play four this year?
"I would probably assume I'm playing four and Ben's playing the five."

When did you get back to where you were 100%?
"I got back in May, but I got hurt again so I sit out another couple of weeks. I was back to full force in June."

Freshman Center Bartosz Lewandowski
Hometown: Torun, Poland
Vitals: 7-3/245

Nickname: Big Bart

Team's Funniest Nickname: Horny (Dennis Horner)

When I first met Coach Lowe, I thought: "He is a professional."

Bartosz Lewandowski

Teammate who will surprise this year: Ben McCauley

In my CD player right now: Kanye West

What do you think you can contribute?
"Hopefully my height can help on defense to alter some shots and block some shots."

Do you see yourself playing a big role this season?
"We have no post guys right now so I count that I will get some playing time. Everything depends on how hard I work. That's what coach Lowe says."

What are your thoughts on coach Lowe?
"Coach Lowe, he's the man. He came from professionals. He's the man here. Whatever he says we'll do, and it will make us better."

Redshirt Sophomore Simon Harris
Hometown: Raleigh, North Carolina
Vitals: 6-5/230

Nickname: Showtime

Team's Funniest Nickname: Osmosis Jones (Farnold Degand)

When I first met Coach Lowe, I thought: "He was funny."

Teammate who will surprise this year: Courtney Fells

The best thing about the fans at NC State:
They are diehards.

You transferred in from Elon. What played a role in that decision?
"Dad basically talked to coach Lowe and coach Lowe was enthusiastic about it. Dad coming back was huge, and I've always wanted to be a part of this program."

What will you add to the team in practice?
"I feel that I'm a fairly hard worker, and I think that will make my teammates better."

What role do you see for yourself when you can see the floor?
"I think I'm a rebounding and passing guard right now. I try to go to the glass as hard as possible when I can, try to hit my open teammates. It's just how my mindset is."

What are your thoughts on coach Lowe?"He's an unbelievable guy. I'm not the type of person to just say that. He's a great person. He's the type of person that goes out of his way."

Redshirt Freshman Guard Trevor Ferguson
Hometown: Odessa, Florida
Vitals: 6-5/176

Team's Funniest Nickname: Osmosis Jones (Farnold Degand)

When I first met Coach Lowe, I thought: "We're gonna have a great year."

Trevor Ferguson
An interesting thing nobody knows about me is: "I have a snake."

What were your thoughts when coach Sendek left?
It was a little crazy once coach Sendek left and it was up in the air about who we were going to get. I love coach Lowe. I love the way he plays, I love the up-and-down tempo. It's more fun and I think it's better suited to our team than what coach Sendek was running."

How does this fit your skills?
"Again, coach Lowe's system definitely fits my skills better. Pushing the ball, getting up and down, that's what I like to do."

What do you bring on the court?
"I believe I bring a little of everything. I'm a good ballhandler, I can shoot, I can get to the basket. I think I can do a little of everything."

Anyone on this team stick out to you?
"Obviously Gavin... Gavin's a beast. Him and Courtney... him and Courtney on the wings is going to be fun to watch this year."

Sophomore Forward/Center Ben McCauley
Hometown: West Newton, Pennsylvania
Vitals: 6-9/235

Nickname: Big Ben

Team's Funniest Nickname: Big Lazy (Brandon Costner)

When I first met Coach Lowe, I thought: "Wow, what a great smile!"

An interesting thing nobody knows about me is: "I have a lava lamp."

Thoughts on this team:
"I think that we have the right amount of players. I think we can definitely do some things to make people look at us."

Thoughts on coach Lowe:
"He's a really competitive guy. He's really nice off the court, but you can tell that when he gets on the court it's all about business. I think that will carry over once we get in the season because he wants to win as well as we do."

What are your concerns with playing the center spot all season?
"I just hope I'm strong enough to go up against the other guys in the ACC. I know I'm a sophomore, but at the same time I feel like I've proven that I can play and I can compete at this level."

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