One of the oldest cliches in sports is that there is no “I” in “team.” Like most cliches, there is a solid kernel of truth in the center, albeit one that becomes so overused the people start looking past it. According to an article on WRALsportsfan.com’s website this morning, there was a lot of “I” on last year’s Wolfpack men’s hoops team, something that won’t be as much of a problem on this year’s squad:
This year, Julius Mays said, “We have no individual just about themselves. When I got here, we’ve had players that have been more about themselves. They’d rather score 30 points than N.C. State win the game.
“You can’t win like that. We’ve also had players that try to turn other players against Coach to get them on their page instead of Coach’s page. You can’t win like that.”
Tracy Smith, who will be a key player inside, agreed.
“Last year and the year before that, everybody wanted to come in and play their own way,” Smith said. “I don’t think we’ll have that problem. Everybody’s on the same page.”
Let’s hope so. State is a team that will quite often be overmatched from a physical skills standpoint, and if there are five freelancers out on the court facing that sort of competition, they will get last year’s results all over. If this year’s vintage of Wolfpack basketball plays in usison and according to plan, they may well be a pleasant surprise – a team that wins games it is not supposed to win, and exceeds everyone’s expectation by a comfortable margin.
This topic was also launched on our message boards last Friday and can be seen by clicking.