Q&A with Patric Young


Published: Monday, November 1, 2010 at 3:41 p.m.
Last Modified: Monday, November 1, 2010 at 3:41 p.m.

Florida freshman Patric Young is a McDonald's High School All-American who will be counted on to make a contribution in the low post for the Gators this season.

Q: You spent a good part of your summer playing with the U.S.A. under-18 national team. How was that experience?

A: It helped me prepare for the two-a-days that are starting soon here. They helped me learn some of the same stuff that Coach (Billy) Donovan is starting to teach me. Stuff like defending the ball and not giving up on plays.

Q: Chris Ford, the NBA Draft analyst for ESPN, has you ranked as his No. 9 overall draft prospect for next season. Have you heard or do you pay attention to that?

A: I heard about it, but I try not to pay attention. Someone hit me up on Twitter about it, but I was like 'Man, don't worry about that right now.' It's pretty cool though to think that some people can see me going to the NBA right now, but I'm really focused on winning an NCAA championship right now.

Q: I was at a restaurant a couple of weeks ago and sat by you and fellow freshman Casey Prather. You both seemed to be competing on who could eat the most chicken wings. If you were really hungry, how many do you think you could eat?

A: I threw down 50 that day, but I think I could throw down 75. I don't think I ever threw down 50 before.

Q: How did you feel after eating 50?

A: Not bad. I wasn't all that full. I wasn't hungry, but I wasn't that full. I could have went for a few more, but they cost too much (laughs).

Q: What kind of wings do you prefer.

A: Barbecue. With ranch.

Q: What's Gainesville been like for you so far?

A: Being here as a student-athlete has been like a job, to tell you the truth, because there's always somewhere to be. But I love that. I love always having something to do instead of just sitting around and waiting for something to pop up. The environment is great here and the fans are great, too. We were at signing day a few days ago and a gentleman came up to me and said 'I've been waiting 33 years for a young man like you to come here and play basketball.' I was like, 'Come on, man. I'm not anything like that.'

Q: With so many expectations, are you worried about pressure?

A: I don't try to think about it as pressure. I try to think of it as a blessing. People see a lot in me and they see how good I can be. I just try to keep working hard and do well out there.

Q: Vernon Macklin said that sometimes when you guys play against each other in practice, it seems like you have seven elbows.

A: Yeah, he says that (laughs). He's always telling me that I foul out every time we play each other. It's really hard to stop him from getting that hook shot off. Really hard.

Q: If you guys went one-on-one right now, who would win?

A: No comment (laughs).

Q: Beyond basketball, what's a talent that you have that people might now know about?

A: I play golf. I started when I was like 10 or maybe younger. I was playing baseball then and it messed up my baseball swing. I stopped until this past summer, then I started picking it up again. I've got my own customized clubs with my name on the grip with a little Gator head.

Q: How good are you?

A: Come on, let's go. Give me a tee time and I'll show you. It's on. I drive the ball a mile. Straight is a different question, but it goes a mile in a direction (laugh).

Q: Were you a good baseball player?

A: I was pretty good. I was actually getting scouted a bit by the (Cincinnati) Reds in my 10th grade year. I don't know. I ended up stopping, but I'm happy I'm here. You can't live in the past and I'm thankful to be a Gator.

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