Scottie May: Culture and communication.
IC: Scott, how's this season going so far for you, playing for Indiana?
Scottie: It's actually going really well. We've started to mesh real well as a team. We know each other pretty well now. We're just playing hard and we're competing and our defense is really improved and that's how we're winning ball games right now.
IC: Tell me about the Indiana win over North Carolina. Did you and Sean have any conversations about that?
Scottie: Yeah! [laughing and looks at me like it's an obvious question -- which it was] He stopped answering his phone! Everytime we scored, he got a phone call (because I redshirted, I don't travel).
But I was in town and he had all his friends over at my Dad's house and we had a little friendly bet going on. So, you know, after the very first play of the game, Jared [Jeffries] throws up a crazy shot from about 28 feet, I got right on the phone, called him—"See that?" [still laughing] So we, you know, "talked about it."
IC: Sean's been under some intense media scrutiny. How's he handling it?
Scottie: I think he's handling it well. He's been real patient with people. What can people really say to hurt his feelings? He's ranked top 10 in the country. His team is ranked top 15 in the country. And he's having a good senior year and he's gone where he wanted to go.
IC: Was that a hard decision for you personally?
Scottie: Not as much so for me because Sean and me are best friends. We're eleven months apart so we talk about everything. While all this was going on we talked 3-4 times a week so I pretty much knew through the conversations, from where they started to where it all finished up after his visit to North Carolina. And he pretty much told me after his visit that he wasn't really sure but that's where he thought he wanted to go.
IC: Fast forward to where Carolina and Indiana play when Sean's playing for UNC. Tell me what that's going to be like?
Scottie: [laughs] It's simple—cheer for Indiana! That's an easy question.
IC: What should people know about Sean besides basketball?
Scottie: He's shy. We're completely opposite as far as personalities. Last night for example. He was in the house about 12:00. He's shy. He could stay home and play video games and watch a movie and have the same fun as he would've if he'd gone out until 2:00 in the morning with all his friends. People think that because there's that basketball/student-athlete thing where all they do is go out and mess around with chicks. He's not like that at all.
IC: Did you and Sean play ball against each other growing up?
Scottie: Oh yeah. We had some wars.
I give myself a lot of credit. Seriously, we'd get up at 8:00 in the morning and walk to the park and we'd do drills outside, take our shirts off, think we're real big [smiling]. People driving by [laughing] and sucking in our stomachs when they went by.
So we'd play and we'd make rules because he was always bigger than me. I'd say, this game we're not going to take any shots inside the paint. So then, I'd win. We'd split. Then we'd say, this game anything goes. So every time he'd try to back me down, I'd wrap him up so he had to beat me shooting the ball.
IC: So you helped develop his range?
Scottie: That's how I look at it, too! [laughs again] Whatever he makes, I want 15%!
IC: When Sean's on the court, what stands out about his play?
Scottie: To me, you look at Sean, 6-9, 260 pounds, and his game is not power. His game is finesse. Inside, he's not just going to run you over. He's going to find a way for you to either get up in the air—see he finishes well around the bucket but he'd rather shoot jump shots than beat you up down low like Shaq. His game is not a power game.
IC: When you think back, is there one moment when you realized Sean was going to really go far in basketball?
Scottie: It was funny because, as kids growing up, I was always quicker than everybody, but Sean was always bigger -- but his coordination was so bad. Even when he was in 10th grade, he would just fall for no reason.
So when everybody probably realized he was going to be pretty good was when, his freshman year, he started against our rival school and, at that time they had Jon Holmes—he's at North Carolina now—and they beat us by a good 25. But that was the first game he started and he was one of three freshmen to ever start under Coach McKinney [Bloomington High School North] and he's been there for 35 years.
That game I think he had 12 points—he hit three three-pointers and everybody knew he had a chance then.
IC: Will you be coming to North Carolina some to see Sean play?
Scottie: It'll be hard for me to see him play because of my basketball season here but we play each other down the road in the ACC/Big 10 Challenge. He'll be here in the summer and my Mom is going to get a place up there in the summer. And I hear all the guys come back that went to UNC so I'm probably go down there a little bit.