10 Questions With Darrell Arthur

Nov. 14, 2006

Tonight’s game feature highlights Jayhawk forward Darrell Arthur, one of three highly-touted freshmen on the Kansas squad this season.

A powerful forward with a good shooting touch and athleticism, Arthur guided South Oak Cliff High School to back-to-back Texas 4A state titles in 2005 and 2006 and was the tournament’s MVP both years. He was a McDonald’s All-American and third-team Parade All-American and averaged 17.7 points and 10 rebounds his senior season.

Arthur recently sat down with John Krenger of the Kansas Media Relations staff to give Jayhawk fans an inside look at this talented freshman.

1. Where did the “Slim Shady” nickname begin?
D.A.:
When I was playing for my AAU coaches, I was really skinny and Eminem had just come out and since they were already calling me ‘slim’ they just added the ‘Shady’ to it. It does not have anything to do with basketball. I’ve picked up a few pounds since then so I just go by ‘Shady’ now.

2. What NBA player do you model your game after?
D.A.:
People say I play a lot like [Seattle Supersonics forward] Rashard Lewis, but I really don’t try and emulate anybody in particular. My favorite player though is [Houston Rockets guard[ Tracy McGrady.

3. Describe the dream that you had that told you to go to Kansas?
D.A.:
I had this dream that I was playing in just a normal game with Julian and Brandon. That’s all I really remember, but I knew that meant that I should be a Jayhawk.

4. Kansas football players Xavier Rambo, Dexton Fields and Anthony Webb went to your high school — South Oak Cliff. Did they ever try to get you out to play football in high school or here at KU?
D.A.:
I’m really close with Dexton. Xavier, Anthony and I have class together so I’ve become close with them. We did not hang out that much [in high school] because they transferred from another high school to mine their senior years, but now we hang out a lot. They never tried to get me out for football but the coaches did. They told me that they have size 13 cleats, big helmets, and pads but I told them that I was going to stick to basketball.

5. Although you’ve only been in the program for a short time, what is Coach Self’s favorite clich√©?
D.A.:
He always tells us before we go out before a game to ‘get some energy!’

6. You were very successful in high school, winning two 4A Texas state titles. Do you feel like that success will help you at this level?
D.A.:
I think it will. We’re trying to win national championships and that is all I’m about since I won two in high school. I want to win a college national championship here.

7. You were named a McDonald’s All-American, third-team Parade All-American, Dallas Morning News Player of the Year and Mr. Basketball in the Coaches in the State of Texas. Which one of those honors do you consider to be your biggest achievement?
D.A.:
I always wanted to win Mr. Basketball ever since [Utah Jazz guard] C.J. Miles won it. C.J. and I were going neck and neck for it my junior year, so I knew I had to win it my senior year.

8. What do you like to do in your free time here at KU?
D.A.:
Sleep. I have to get as much sleep as possible now because we’re so busy.

9. Who is the “class-clown” of the basketball team?
D.A.:
Everybody actually. Brandon [Rush] and I are funny sometimes. Julian [Wright] can be funny one day and Brandon will be funny the next day. We have a whole cast of characters.

10. Who is the meanest guy to go up against in practice?
D.A.:
Sasha Kaun. I hate going against Sasha because I can never get around him on the post. He’s so strong, especially in his upper-body. When he gets the ball in the post he has an attitude that he’s either going to score or get fouled.