One-on-One With Byron Eaton

Byron Eaton enters his third year as an Oklahoma State Cowboy with some lofty expectations. He will be the team's only true point guard following the departure of JamesOn Curry, and will be asked to be one of the leaders for a squad with just one senior (Marcus Dove). We recently visited with Eaton about the team's seven newcomers and what they're doing to prepare for the 2007-08 season.

GP: How are the pick-up games going?
Eaton: They're going real well right now. All the new players are fitting in fine. We're just trying to get them ... the first week they were shooting a lot. They still had that high school mentality but as the games are picking up we're letting them know that they don't need to be shooting every time (they touch the ball). We've got a little pass rule going right now. You've got to make three passes unless you have a layup or it's a potential fast break. If I push the ball up and you're not back on defense I can penetrate and pitch it (out) and that's a shot. But the main thing is three passes and getting some movement going, screen away ... those type of things to get ready for the season.

GP: Which of the newcomers have impressed you the most?
Eaton: If I had to pick one or two it would have to be James (Anderson) and (Ibrahima) Thomas, because those two guys are on my team. James can shoot the ball really good. He can shoot, he can move without the ball. Thomas is a good shot blocker. He's got a nice hook shot. Nick Sidorakis is a nice shooter, and he moves good without the ball. I haven't had a chance to play with all the freshmen. Marshall (Moses) is very athletic. When the shot is taken he tries to go up there and climbs the board every time – get a rebound, get a tip, get a dunk, whatever. I haven't played on the same team with Martavious (Adams) yet, but playing against him (we found out) he can step out and hit that 15-foot jumper. I got a chance to play with Brad (Garrett), and he's a great shooter. I know we're going to have some fun this year with my penetration and his ability to shoot.

GP: Which of these guys are going to have to contribute right away for this team to be successful?
Eaton: If I had to choose, I would have to say that I think Brad will come in and hit some shots for us. I think he'll hit some big shots for us during the season. I think James, Marshall, Thomas are Martavious are going to have to step up big, especially for the post guys Martavious and Marshall because really the only post player we have coming back is Coop (Kenny Cooper). Oh, I'm forgetting about Anthony Brown who is a monster. He's a big-time, big-time rebounder, and he's a big-time scorer. He can step out and shoot the ball. He's so big .... we call him 300. He's a beast under there. He's been on my team.

GP: Have you been playing the same teams?
We have been but we've decided to begin switching it up a little bit so everybody can get to play with everyone else. My first time on the same team with Nick, I liked it because he moves around a lot. There are so many things he can do. He can shoot, go to the basket. The same thing when I played on the team with Brad. He's got some great moves off the dribble.

GP: How important is this time, and getting to know each other during the summer months?
Eaton: We're just trying to grow, and help make the transition easier from high school to college. We're just trying to get them ready for how Coach Sean wants us to play the game. Like this passing rule was a great thing because we had some guys coming down and shooting the ball every time without passing it. Coach Sean is not going to put up with that at all. I'm glad we're breaking them in now as opposed to when (practice) begins. We've got a great group of guys that came in.

These are just a few excerpts from an interview with Eaton for the next issue of Go Pokes Magazine. This issue will be delivered to our subscribers in mid-August. If you are not a subscriber but would like to order, Click Here Now or you may call our customer service center at 1-888-501-5752.

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