Monday, January 18 (9:30 P.M.)
I made it up for the game against Clemson and had a good time. I enjoyed the game. When we were coming back it was the most excited I've seen the fans at a game I've been to. It was a good experience.
The team played hard, but five players particularly stepped up and played big. Julius, Tracy, Scott, Richard, and Farnold all played well to me. I was looking up at the scoreboard and all of them were in double figures. Usually when a team has all five guys in double figures you would think they'd win the game. They played well, but it didn't come out like we hoped it would.
I was able to make it back in time to watch my game. We lost by 11 in overtime. We played hard, but we just had way too many turnovers and ill-advised shots. Everyone needs to learn their role and do their role... not try to do another person's role.
As for me, I'm feeling a lot better. I practiced today, and my shot was looking better. I'm back dunking again so I've got my legs back too. I'm really just trying to focus on keeping fluids in me so I can stay hydrated.
The plan now for me is to go to the game against Duke. I'll be there for that one, but I'm not sure if it will be an unofficial or official visit. I do know that me and Lorenzo [Brown] are going to that game, but I don't know what kind of visit it will be yet.
That game is going to be big. The thing is, I feel like we're playing really well right now. I mean Duke's really good, but I think we're going to get them. I've got a feeling we're going to take them.
Wednesday, January 20 (1:00 P.M.)
I guess the big news is I played in our game last night. We got the win, and I had 31 points in my first game back.
Originally I was going to wait until the Wheeler game, but I was feeling a lot better and I found out that we were borderline on being a #1, #2, or #3 seed for our conference... it was a tiebreaker so we needed to get that win. If we didn't win and finished a #3 seed we would probably have to play Centennial or Milton first so I wanted to get us above that by finishing as a #1 or #2 seed.
Overall I felt good. My legs are a little bit tired... I didn't play the whole game. We really managed my time on the court. I took breaks between quarters, but I did play all of the fourth quarter. I think the workouts I've been doing helped me stay in shape, but I'm not going to lie, it took me a few times down the floor to really get my wind back.
We fly out in a couple of hours for Raleigh. Me, my dad, and Lorenzo's mom are flying from here. I know a lot of people wonder how I make so many games. My dad works for one of the major airlines so I basically get to fly anywhere I want for free as long as the plane has an available seat. It's great. When I was living in Charlotte and playing at Cannon School I was able to fly home to Atlanta every weekend and visit my family.
Because I have the option to fly whenever I want it allows me to make about all of the State games that don't interfere with my games, especially since it seems like there are a bunch of flights from Atlanta to Raleigh. I remember when I signed... coach Lowe and the coaches said I'm a part of the family so I want to try and make all the games and support my family.
It's great having Lorenzo's mom fly with us because she's basically in our family. We've known each other since I was five so she's always been there ever since I was young and our families all support each other. My family go to see Lorenzo play at Hargrave, and she came to Charlotte in December to watch me play. We've always had a close relationship and she's always been there whenever I needed anything. We get along just like me and my mom get along so you can say we're real close.
Well, in a few hours we'll be in Raleigh watching State play Duke. I can't wait... it's going to be crazy!
Thursday, January 22 (8:30 P.M.)
I told you we were going to win! The thing that stood out to me the most was that game had a different atmosphere. I feel like the NC State fans are always into the game even if there's not a lot of fans there for the smaller teams... they are always showing their love, but it was crazy for Duke.
I think we won because everybody stepped up and played a big role. From Tracy all the way to Josh Davis when he got in there, everybody played a big role. Some people stepped up more than others like Dennis and Tracy but everybody did their job and didn't try to do what they couldn't do. Guys like Richard have been stepping up big. He's playing like he was back here in Georgia... you need everyone to play hard like that to win games.
If I had to pick one play that stood out it had to be when Javi hit that big three-pointer. It seemed like he held the ball the whole possession and I was standing up yelling, "Do something with it" and things like that... we were all saying do something like penetrate and dish. When he shot it I was like, "Oh No, what are you doing," but when it went in I was clapping and yelling, "That's my boy." It was one of those type of shots... it was a big play in the game.
At the end of the game it was crazy. When the students started rushing the floor we all stood on chairs so we wouldn't get ran over. I kind of thought about going out there, but I decided to sit that one out.
C.J. [Leslie] was there with me and Lorenzo. C.J.'s mom wants him at NC State, I want him there, Lorenzo wants him there. Coach Lowe wants him to commit. With all of that, why wouldn't you join the team? Why wouldn't you want to play in that atmosphere? The thing is you could go somewhere and have to build your reputation up. If he went to NC State... they are already treating us like some of the best to come through there and play and we've never made a shot. Why wouldn't you want to play at NC State with that type of love? I still think he's going to make the right decision. C.J. will make up his own mind, but I know he wants to play with me.
My team plays on Saturday against Wheeler so I had to get back today for school and practice. That's always a big game. We're two rivals right down the street from each other, and we both have good basketball backgrounds. Wheeler has always been the top dog, but Walton is one of the top teams now. I hear people are already pre-ordering tickets... it's going to be crazy.
They have Jelan [Kendrick], and we're both top-ranked players. Phil Taylor also plays for point guard for Wheeler and we have a good, friendly competition. He came to my game against Pope and I'm going tomorrow to see him play Milton.
I just want my team to come out on top. I feel good about our chances with the way we've been playing... we're playing more as a team now.