McKie Discusses Coaching Changes

It has been a hectic past couple of weeks for Wake Forest basketball fans and recruits. 2010 signee Travis McKie spoke with DeaconSports Monday evening regarding the firing of head coach Dino Gaudio and the hiring of new head coach Jeff Bzdelik.

While many high school seniors experience ‘spring break drama', few have experienced the type of drama that Travis McKie did a couple of weeks ago during his spring break. "Spring break I was in the gym, looked at my phone and had about 20 missed calls, 100 texts, and Twitter was going crazy," McKie said. "I saw my mom had called and I called her. She said Coach Gaudio was fired. I just hung up and didn't know what to think. I was just trying to get answers. "

The following week, Wake Forest athletics director Ron Wellman had chosen Coach Gaudio's successor, former University of Colorado head coach Jeff Bzdelik. "When I found out they hired Coach Bzdelik at first I said ‘who?' and then I looked at his record at Colorado which wasn't great. But then I looked more into it and looked up his resume and he had 17 years in the NBA, coached Carmelo [Anthony], coached Colorado even though they had a bad year, and was developing a guy [Alec Burks] who wasn't recruited hard out of high school into an NBA player. I thought it might be a good fit but I just wanted to talk to him, look at him eye to eye, and see what he had to say."

This past Saturday morning, McKie and his family had the opportunity to meet Coach Bzdelik and have all of their questions answered. "He came to my house Saturday and we talked it out," McKie said. "He talked about what he wanted to do and how it would be. With that it was clear and I decided to stay."

In total, McKie spoke with Coach Bzdelik for around two hours, discussing plans, expectations, offensive/defensive schemes, coaching staff personnel, and more.

"He wants us running the ball like when he coached Carmelo during Carmelo's rookie year," McKie said. " Attack, attack, attack. I'm ready. You can't be in the NBA 17 years and not know what you're doing. I'm on board and hopefully he will make me a better person and a better player and get me to that next level."

According to McKie, the entire 2010 basketball recruiting class had similar feelings regarding their status with Wake Forest following Coach Gaudio's firing but have all since been happy with the new Demon Deacon staff. "We talk and were in touch with each other throughout," McKie said of his fellow 2010 recruits. "I think everyone is staying and would be shocked if that wasn't the case. Carson [Desrosiers] is staying, Melvin [Tabb] is staying I think, JT [Terrell] is staying, Tony [Chennault] is all good I think. If they do [leave] it is their decision but I would be shocked, real shocked, if anyone leaves."

McKie expects his recruiting class to come in and play extremely hard beginning next year when they arrive on campus and hope to turn some heads. "A lot of Wake fans don't think we'll be over .500 next year," he noted. "We've got to take the leadership role and work with guys like Gary, Tony, Ty, C.J., and those guys. The key is we're learning what we saw Kentucky did a lot with the freshmen. We aren't going to mimic them necessarily but we're going to try to win."

"We're going to be a young team," he continued, "and the ACC will be real good with a lot of people coming in and good players coming back. It should be better than last year. I'm hoping to come in and work hard to get a Wake an ACC championship."


  • McKie is known for how much he uses Twitter. The Richmond, VA native who goes by @travismckie on Twitter, has tried to convince his fellow 2010 classmates to join in as well – but without luck just yet…
  • McKie is expected to room with Tony Chennault at Wake Forest next year. J.T. Terrell will likely live with Melvin Tabb
  • McKie just completed the second of two All-Star games that he participated in. He will be back in the gym and weightroom Tuesday onward.

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