A to Z with Mitchell Wilbekin


Rock junior Mitchell Wilbekin said something most people wouldn't know about him is that he enjoys singing.

Matt Stamey/Staff photographer
Published: Wednesday, March 13, 2013 at 9:33 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, March 13, 2013 at 9:33 p.m.

SCHOOL: The Rock

YEAR: Junior

POSITION: Point guard

JERSEY NUMBER: 1

HEIGHT: 6-foot

WEIGHT: 170 pounds

A rea basketball player I would pay to watch play: Isaiah Jackson (Gainesville). He's a pretty good friend of mine and I hear he is doing pretty well over there.

B est movie I've ever seen is ... “American Gangster.” I'm a Denzel Washington fan.

C oach Justin Harden's words of advice for me: Hard work always pays off.

D inner on an ideal night: Anything my Mom (Katy Wilbekin) makes. She is a great cook.

E SPN's best program: Top 10 plays.

F lorida Gators basketball team will ... Be the national champions.

G ame-winning jumper or drive to the basket or delivering a nice pass that leads to the winning basket? Delivering a nice pass. It's fun setting players up. Scoring is fun too, but setting players up is fun as well.

H oisting the Sunshine Independent Athletic Association state title in Jacksonville meant ... A lot because that was the first state championship in boys basketball in (school) history. A lot of people before me, like my dad and my brother (UF's Scottie Wilbekin) have all worked hard to get us to this point. It felt good to finally get it done.

I nteresting thing about me away from basketball: I like to sing. I'm not that good, but a couple of the guys on the team would tell you they catch me every once in awhile.

J oker on the team: Definitely Arie Stewart. Without him we wouldn't have won state just because he affects the mood, puts everyone in a good mood.

K obe Bryant, LeBron James or Michael Jordan in his prime? I got to go with Michael Jordan. He just did it all. He was the greatest.

L east favorite moment playing at The Rock? Probably last year in Tennessee at a national tournament when I hurt my knee. It took me a while to get it back in game shape, to get healthy.

M y top hangout spot in Gainesville is ... Probably the gym.

N ickname? Some people call me Mitch.

O ne person in my life who inspires me most: Got to be mom and dad (Svend Wilbekin). I wouldn't be here without them.

P otential college major: I want to do physical therapy.

Q uiet-time activity: Studying or watching TV.

R eading the newspaper or going online to get my high school sports coverage: I don't read the newspaper anymore. I go on Twitter a lot.

S cottie's impact on you as a player: Just growing up, when I would have to play him, he was always older, always bigger and stronger. That just made me better. It made me want to work harder.

T eam I would most like to play: Findlay Prep (Henderson, Nev.). They are the No. 1 team in the nation. I would just like to play against them because I know we would do good.

U niversities or colleges I am considering: Some of the top ones are Florida, Texas, Miami and Oklahoma State.

V acation spot I love: Orlando. I know we go there a lot, but I've always said I would like to live there. They have Universal (Studios), and it seems like an exciting city.

W hat area players would I want to see in a four-person, one-on-one tournament and how would it go? Isaiah Jackson and Eric Turner of Gainesville, me and Joel Embiid (Kansas signee). I would play Isaiah and beat him, Joel would play Eric and beat him. Then I would play Joel. I love playing him because he is so competitive.

X box, PlayStation or Wii?: I used to play Xbox, but Scottie was the big video game person in our family. So once he left, I stopped playing.

Y ear I was born: 1994.

Z oo animal I like most: Elephant, just to see how big they really are.

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