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SLU Billikens - Drew Diener

NCAA Interview

by Shawn Siegel (responses are copied directly from e-mail text)

1)Tell us about the trip [SLU made this summer] to Spain & France.  I know you're there to practice basketball, but it must be pretty fun & exciting for the team none the less.   Also, looking over a report put out by the SLU SID, I  noticed there was a  funny story involving you and an 'unfit' man playing  soccer. 

 

The trip to Europe was great. It was great for our players to get a feel FOR THE NEW COACHING STAFF AND EACH OTHER. I FEEL LIKE WE HAVE REALLY BENEFITED IN LEARNING COACH SODERBERGS SYSTEM. YES, I WAS INVOLVED IN A GAME OF SOCCER WITH A DRUNK MAN.  WE FOUND A SOCCER GAME GOING ON AT ABOUT MIDNIGHT AND BEGAN PLAYING WITH SOME KIDS.  NEXT THING WE KNEW, THIS MAN WAS PLAYING WITH US.  HIS GAME ENDED QUICKLY THOUGH, AFTER HE WAS HIT IN THE FACE WITH THE SOCCER BALL!

 

 2)Last year was a pretty up-and-down season for the Bills.  There were quality wins (Louisville twice, Charlotte), and there were some dissapointing loses (UALR, the close Mizzou game, Tulane in the C-USA Tourney).  Is there anything you can attribute this inconsistency to?


I THINK WE WERE AN INCONSISTENT TEAM OFFENSIVELY LAST YEAR.
WE REALLY STRUGGLED TO SCORE AT TIMES.  WHEN WE WERE
CLICKING ON ALL CYLINDERS, WE WERE CAPABLE OF BEATING A LOT
OF GOOD TEAMS. HOWEVER, THERE WERE TIMES IN WHICH WE REALLY
STRUGGLED TO SCORE.  THOSE WERE SOME OF THE MOST DISAPPOINTING LOSES.

3)Do you think returning so many experience players(9) will help the team create a consistent identity in the new season?


I BELIEVE WE HAVE A CHANCE TO BE REAL GOOD THIS YEAR. WE DO
HAVE A LOT OF EXPERIENCE BACK. IN ADDITION, GUYS HAVE
IMPROVED THEIR GAME IN THE OFFSEASON, AND I THINK OUR NEW
GUYS WILL HELP US. WE ARE ALL REAL EXCITED FOR THE UPCOMING
SEASON.


4)Last year you ranked 5th in the Conference-USA in 3-point percentage at  42.3%, and almost 3/4 of your field goal attempts were  from downtown.  Have you been working more on your long-range prowess, or have you been spending more time polishing up other aspects of your game?


I HAVE SPENT A LOT OF TIME SHOOTING THREE'S AND ALSO A LOT OF
TIME WORKING ON SHOTS OFF THE DRIBBLE OR OFF A SHOT FAKE.
OFFENSIVELY, I THINK IT WILL HELP OUR TEAM IF I CAN DO MORE
THAN JUST SPOT UP FOR THREE'S.

5)What type of offense is Coach Soderberg planning on running?  Is the floor going to be spread enough for you to get your outside looks?


COACH SODERBERG IS RUNNING A MOTION OFFENSE. THE OFFENSE
ALLOWS A LOT OF FREEDOM FOR GUYS TO PLAY TO THEIR STRENGTHS.
I THINK THE OFFENSE WILL BE GOOD FOR OUR PERSONAL. I EXPECT
THAT I WILL GET MY SHARE OF OUTSIDE LOOKS TOO.

6) Your 22 point effort against Charlotte, where you knocked down 8 of 9 shots, and 6 of 7 from three, was very impressive.  But,  is there any one game that sticks out in your mind as your favorite (or best) game as a collegiate athlete.


MY FAVORITE GAME IS MY FIRST GAME AS A SOPHOMORE VS. UIC. IN
THAT GAME I HIT A THREE WITH 4 SECONDS LEFT TO WIN THE GAME.
AFTER REDSHIRTING MY FIRST YEAR HERE AT SLU, AND PLAYING
SPARINGLY MY SECOND YEAR, IT WAS GREAT TO PLAY A BIG PART IN
A WIN. BOTH MY PARENTS WERE AT THE GAME, AND I KNOW HOW
HAPPY THEY WERE. THAT WAS MAYBE THE BEST PART.

7)Drew, you had a phenomenal career at high-school in Wisconsin, and your accolades are too long to list.  Your coach at Goodrich was (and I guess still is..) your father Dick.  I also noticed that your parents were in Europe for the team's summer tour.  How important have they been to your success as a basketball player?


WITHOUT THEM I WOULDN'T BE PLAYING DIV. ONE HOOPS. THEY
OPENED UP A LOT OF DOORS FOR ME. DRIVING ME ALL OVER THE
COUNTRY TO BBALL TOURNAMENTS AND SPENDING SO MUCH TIME IN
THE GYM. IT IS REALLY AMAZING HOW MUCH TIME THEY PUT INTO
HELPING ME BECOME A GOOD BALL PLAYER.

8)Is there anything else you'd like to tell Billiken fans and other college hoops fans from around the country?


THANKS FOR THE SUPPORT- BILLS FANS!