Welcome to the first of what will be a weekly installment. Hope you all enjoy. This one, with the new K-State men’s basketball coach, was fun and enlightening…
1. You can switch places with one of your players for a day. Who, and why?
Clent Stewart. Because I’d like to be his age, 21, as a college senior. Compared to today’s seniors, who are 23 or 24, he’s so young. His maturity level, how he conducts himself at such a young age, how he battles such a serious situation like he’s going through with his mother (Vanessa Stewart is fighting cancer) — I’d like to see the world he views it. He’s been taught the right way. … With so many possible distractions, he continues to not allow those things affect him. I’d like to see life through his eyes.
2. What has been the best part of this job? I don’t know if there is one thing that jumps out. … You’ve caught me off guard with that. To be completely honest, the thing I never experienced before, is having no worries about how to pay for my children’s education and my mortgage.
3. Ever get tired of purple?
No, actually. I never, until I got here, wore anything purple. It’s grown on me. I think, actually, I wear it all of the time now. I enjoy it. I think it’s a hip color.
4. Is there a “dream job” for you, kind of like your predecessor and dear friend Bob Huggins?
Growing up the way I did, as the first person in my family to attend college, when I attended college — first at Miami Dade and then at Florida International — I didn’t have ties to a major university where I said I wanted to coach their program one day. I took a different path. I started coaching at a age when most guys are still playing. My whole ambition, my whole dream job is to be coaching a team that is competing in the Final Four. I’ve never had one school to say, ‘That’s the one.’ So, no, there isn’t one school that would be considered a dream job for me.
5. What is your view of the local media? Likes? Dislikes?
I’ve been pleased. Really, I have. … For the most part, (the treatment) has been fair. It’s all you can ask for. The media has a job to do, just like I have a job to do. I have no complaints. I just want to make sure that the truth is told, the truth is reported and the media is being fair while doing it.
- Martin said the Wildcats will undergo media training in order to prepare for the demands the team will face this season, but mostly in the future. “It’s something I think is important,” he said. “I don’t want to coach guys who don’t want to play professionally. Now, does that mean they’re all going to make money? No. But if they have a chance to be a pro, they’re going to have to deal with the media. It’s just a matter of helping them prepare. Because once you leave college, it’s a business.”
- Martin, like a certain blogger, is a Boston Red Sox fan, stemming from his days at Northeastern although he’s from Miami. While he was in Miami, coaching AAU basketball, he befriended a future New York Yankee. Alex Rodriguez, according to Martin, was a “(heck) of a basketball player.” Rodriguez, a point guard, played for Martin when he was 14 years old. Martin still raves about his basketball ability. “He could make money playing the game,” he said. Martin said Rodriguez couldn’t hit when he was younger. It wasn’t until his junior year of high school, according to Martin, that A-Rod began to hit. Martin said he is trying to lure the mega-star to Manhattan this winter for a game.