DUNCANVILLE, Texas - The most regal words tend to follow Marcus Smart when people talk about him as a basketball player.
Blue-collar. Intelligent. Warrior. Team player. And then there is one of his favorites -- winner.
Since starting for Flower Mound Marcus High School as a freshman, Smart has been nothing short of impressive of the basketball court. He since has emerged into a bona fide leader and the quintessential college prospect, and he has a UIL state championship to add to his resume. Smart is being recruited by all of the Big 12 schools, as well as North Carolina, Marquette and Arizona.
Smart's worker qualities make him not only a major recruit but also a fan favorite. Smart, a 6-foot-4, 220-pound guard, is No. 6 in the latest TexasHoops.com state rankings and No. 24 in the latest Rivals150 national rankings. He is currently leading the Texas Assault in the 23rd annual Under Armour Great American Shoot-Out this weekend.
TexasHoops.com Senior Writer Damon Sayles had a chance to sit down with Smart following the Assaut's pool-play victory Friday against the Oregon D-1 Ambassadors.
2 MINUTES WITH MARCUS SMART This most likely will be your last GASO. You and your Assault teammates have won quite a few games. Talk about your experience with the tournament. "We've been here a couple of years before, but we were real young. Now, we're the top of the top. There are teams coming for us now, but we just come out and play as a team."
What makes Marcus Smart such a likable basketball player? "I'm a competitor. I'm not a real flashy guy who is all about me. I don't need 30 points a game to be happy. I like to make the nice pass, dive on the floor for a loose ball, take a charge, grab a rebound, stuff like that. I think that's what some fans like."
How's your recruiting experience been? "It's been a great experience. For any kid going through the recruiting process, it's always a blessing. All the coaches asking you to come to their school makes you feel good, and I don't take any of it for granted."
Settle this myth for us once and for all: You and teammate Phil Forte are a package deal for college recruiters. "Not at all. I definitely would love to go to the same college with Phil and play on the same team. But it's not a package deal."
This is your last GASO. Has that registered? And is there a different feeling when you guys get ready to play? "As the tournament goes on, you get more and more anxious to play. This is it for a lot of us; there will be no more AAU ball for us. You've got to go out and enjoy it and thank God for everything."