by: Griffin Bennett
As I promised, below is my interview that I did with Terrence Ross after hanging out with him for the day. I went to his dorm room which he shares with Scott Suggs and Aziz N’diaye. The stacks of pizza boxes in the kitchen (at least 10) were the only food remnants in the kitchen and their living room had nothing but a table and two chairs. It was immediately obvious that the players rarely are hanging out in their rooms and are usually out on the go.
Without any further ado, here’s our discussion.
Montlake Madness: Why did you choose number 31? Were you a big Reggie Miller fan?
Terrence Ross: After I chose it I realized that Reggie Miller wore that number, but I chose it because it was my mom’s number in college.
MM: Where did your mom play?
TR: She played at Cal Poly Pomona.
MM: If you had to compare your game to anyone in the NBA, who would it be?
TR: So far, people say J.R. Smith. That’s probably the person I play like the most.
MM: Who do you WANT you game to resemble the most?
TR: I would say any tall guard. Anywhere from Tracy McGrady to Carmelo Anthony.
MM: What do you want your Husky future to look like? Are you trying to stay all four years?
TR: Right now I’m just trying to stay here for four years, develop as a player, and a get my degree. After that, I’ll go from there.
MM: Have you played with any of the incoming freshman yet? What are their games like?
TR: I’ve played against Tony [Wroten] and that’s it. Tony is a real crafty guard. He’s his own type of player if you had to compare him to anybody. He’s very creative and I’m just excited to play with all of them.
MM: Who do you hang out with the most on the team?
TR: Really, we all just hang out together. I mean, I live with Scott [Suggs] and Aziz [N’diaye] but I still see Darnell [Gant], C.J. [Wilcox], and Desmond [Simmons] just as much. Pretty much the only time that I don’t see everyone is when we’re going to sleep.
MM: How has Romar shaped you as a player today? What kind of coach is he?
TR: He’s showed me a lot of things that I need to work on. He’s instilled a lot of good qualities in me such as working hard, work ethic, and he’s just fun to play under. He’s a really good coach and he knows a lot of things on and off the court. He’s been a blessing to play for.
MM: With Isaiah Thomas and Justin Holiday leaving there are some big holes to fill. How much of that do you think falls on your shoulders?
TR: Since we have three guards, it’s going to be a larger responsibility from the year before but I think that me, Scott [Suggs], and C.J. [Wilcox] are three of the best guards in the league. For me, it’s going to be just the same as it is for them. I think it’s going to be a good season for us.
MM: How do you think that the guard rotation is going to work out? Are you all going to share time or play the hot hand?
TR: We could play the hot hand or we could shift time. It’s really just going to depend on what Romar feels about it.
MM: What are your goals for next season in regards to points and rebounds per game? Do you have anything like that?
TR: Point-wise, it really doesn’t matter to me. I just want to let it come to me. For rebounds, I want to average close to double figures [per game]. As far as the goes, our goal is to just do better than we did last year. That’s the main thing for everybody.
MM: Some people are saying that this might be a down year for the team with the losses of MBA, Overton, IT, and Holiday. What are your thoughts?
TR: I think that we can still improve. They were a big part of our team last year, but I think it’s just going to give everybody else a chance to show what they can do. I think we can be just as good or even better but we have to put in the work and be prepared to play.
MM: Your two captains from last year have left in Justin and Isaiah. Who is stepping up this year to take on the leadership role?
TR: I think a little bit of everybody. We’re all trying to push each other. For the captains, it’s probably going to be the seniors: Scott and Darnell. Darnell has always been one to motivate and push us.
MM: Some people have you projected to go in lottery in next year’s NBA Draft. Would you leave early if you thought you would get drafted at that position?
TR: I’m not sure. If that was to happen I’d talk to the coaches and my family. I really haven’t thought about it at all.
MM: Are you trying to become a leader this year? Do you tend to lead by example, or are you a more vocal guy?
TR: I try to lead more by example because people can talk all they want, but if they don’t know what to do themselves then it’s kind of hard to follow them.
MM: How would you describe yourself? What are some of your main qualities?
TR: I’m a down-to-earth guy, not cocky, humble, kind of shy, and hard working.
MM: What part of your game this Summer are you trying to work on the most?
TR: I want to get stronger, faster, and improve my defense. Pretty much everything. I just want to become a better-rounded player.
MM: What would you say is your number one strength on the basketball court?
MM: That easy?
MM: Recently, most of the biggest high school basketball stars from the state of Oregon, including you, have left the state to go to school elsewhere. Why do you think that is?
TR: I guess it’s just whatever feels most appealing to them or what feels best. For me, I just thought it was great fit here. Everything just felt right, you know what I mean? It just seemed right to come here.
MM: Other than you, who else do you think is going to have a breakout-season on the team
TR: C.J. Wilcox and Desmond Simmons.
MM: For those fans that haven’t yet seen Desmond play, how would you describe his game?
TR: I don’t want to make it sound like a bad thing, but Desmond kind of plays like a Dennis Rodman-type player. Just his on-court game, though. He gets every rebound but he can also shoot. I think that’s what people don’t know about him most; he can shoot. He can get to the basket and has a good offensive game. The main things he does are rebound and scrap. When you’re strong and physical like that it helps to be as tall as he is.
MM: He [Desmond] had an injury last year, how has he recovered?
TR: He’s all good. He’s been practicing for a long time.
MM: Have been trying to gain or lose weight this off-season?
TR: I’ve been trying to gain weight. When I first got here I was 170-something. Since then I’ve gained around 20 pounds and I’m going to try to gain 5 more to be at 205 when the season begins.
MM: Some fans were ticked off the other week because your former teammate, Terrence Jones, was in town and playing some pickup games. Can you explain that situation?
TR: Yeah, he just came up to visit me and Antoine [Hosley]. We all played together in high school and he just wanted to come hang with us. We all played some basketball together with some guys from the team. It was basically our high school team against them. It was just a fun time.