Marcus Morris Spends Weekend at Amar'e Stoudemire Skills Camp in Chicago

June 28, 2010

Last weekend, Kansas men’s basketball junior-to-be Marcus Morris Amar’e Stoudemire Skills Camp in Chicago. The camp brings in the top big men from across the nation to work on skills, etc., from Stoudemire, an NBA All-Star and eight-year member of the Phoenix Suns. A forward from Philadelphia, Morris is considered a preseason candidate for many Big 12 and national accolades. Last summer, KU’s Cole Aldrich also participated in the camp. Morris met with the media Monday afternoon in between workouts in KU’s practice gym to discuss his experience.

Kansas‘ Marcus Morris (MM)

On whether it was a good experience:

MM: “Definitely, I got to meet some guys like Kevin Durant, Amar’e (Stoudemaire) and Gilbert Arenas were there. It was a great experience to see the top twelve big men in the country and see how good they were.”

On what drills they focused on:

MM: “We did a lot of footwork. It was a lot of stuff that (KU assistant coach) Danny Manning has already been teaching us. We did a few things with shooting, too, like knowing how to drop-step into it. We learned about finishing above the rim and taking contact.”

On being reported at 218 pounds:

MM: “I haven’t really lost any since the end of last season. I’m still about 230 (pounds). I haven’t really lost any shape from the season because I’m still working out a lot. That was a weird scale, it was like a homemade scale. I got on that scale, then got on another scale at the stadium and I was 227. That 218 is really wrong.”

On who was in the pick-up games each night:

MM: “It was just all of the players. Deron Williams played a little bit and I was on his team. He actually chose me to play on his team. We did a lot of pick and roll stuff. I was hitting a few threes off of his assists. No all-stars really played. Durant watched and shot a little bit with us.”

On if he got any feedback on what to improve upon:

MM: “Not yet. Soon, I will find out if I got invited to LeBron (James) camp, but I’m not really sure yet. If you do well enough, they pick out a few guys and invite them to Lebron camp. I feel like I did well enough to get invited, so hopefully I’m invited.”

On whether he learned about his draft stock:

MM: “No, actually I haven’t. I came home last night and woke up this morning to go to class and to the gym. I’m really not paying too much attention to that. I’m really focused on having a good off-season as a team, not for myself. I’m trying to be a good leader for the team.”

On whether he wants to play more on the perimeter:

MM: “I want to play some three. If I don’t, it still doesn’t matter to me because I want whichever position is the best fit for the team. I’ve played the four for two years and I think I’m doing really well at it. If I change, I change but if I don’t, no problem.”

On whether he learned from anyone in particular:

MM: “One of our coaches taught me a lot of footwork stuff and how to get past opponents because I was probably the most mobile big guy there. None of them really shot threes. I was the only that really shot threes and put the ball on the floor. I think he understood that, so I was doing a lot of quicker stuff and more mobile stuff.”

On his roommate:

MM: “Gus Gilchrist. He committed to Maryland, but he came back out and he goes to USF (South Florida) now. He’ll be a junior this year. He’s a good guy.”

On not having his brother (Markieff Morris) there:

MM: “It was different. It was the first time I flew or did anything away from him in my whole life. I talked to him every chance I got, so it was almost like he was there with me.”

On if he could go pro without his brother, Markieff Morris:

MM: “We really haven’t made that decision. I want to go with him and if it takes me staying for a senior year, then I think that’s what it would have to be. I like playing with my brother. Playing beside him is what I really want to do. If that means I stay for my senior year, which I’m almost 50 percent that I will stay for my senior year. I really want to enjoy college. I really want to stay in college. I would like to graduate from Kansas.”

On if there is a rush to go pro:

MM: “Not at all. I enjoy it. I don’t think there is a hurry at all. I saw that only like five seniors were drafted, but I’m not those seniors and things can change.”

On if he was upset about former guard Sherron Collins not getting drafted:

MM: “I was very upset. I thought Sherron had a great college career and I think, other than John Wall, he was the best point guard there. Things happen that way, but I was very upset about that one.”

On former guard Xavier Henry and former center Cole Aldrich getting drafted:

MM: “I’m happy for him (Xavier). He’s a great kid. He did what he had to do to get to that spot. I’m happy for him and I’m happy for Cole. I think Cole really deserved it. I feel like he put the time and effort in. His family really deserves it and I think he’s going to be a great pro.”

On whether he puts up a specific amount of shots in the gym each day:

MM: “I get up at 6 a.m. and shoot 500. We have shooting times now, so me, Markieff and Mario are up at 6 a.m. shooting 500 shots in the morning and 500 when we come back. We do about 1,000 per day. We mix in off the dribble, threes and stand-still two-pointers. I want my mid-range to be better this year, so I’m really working and really focusing on my mid-range game.”

On people calling him the best player in the league already:

MM: “I think that I’m one of the top players in the league. The effort that I’m putting in and as hard as I’m going to work this summer, I think will put me as one of the top players in the league. We have other guys on our team who could be the top players in the league. I had a great year last year, and that is just preseason talk, but you never know until the season gets going.”