When I decided to re-think PantherU.com, I decided that if I was going to take it to the next level, I needed to get out there and grow the readership beyond the Panther faithful and into the whole Horizon League. Covering all Horizon League schools, at least loosely, would allow me to widen my knowledge of the conference as a whole and bring fans from all teams to the site. This is the first of many interviews I will be doing over the coming weeks and months for PantherU that will not be specifically about the Panthers.
Jackson Aldridge is a 6’1” point guard from Sydney, Australia, one of the coolest cities on earth. Being a point guard from down under, he has naturally drawn comparisons to former Saint Mary’s star Patty Mills. Recently, Aldridge committed to play collegiate ball at Butler. I got in touch with him, and Aldridge will have the “privilege” to be the first subject of “The Interview.”
Jimmy Lemke: So, you picked Butler. Were there any other schools you were seriously considering?
Jackson Aldridge: Yes, I was considering Creighton, Wichita State, Marquette, Washington State and Central Florida.
JL: What was it about Butler that made you want to be a Bulldog?
JA: The players, coaches and students at Butler have developed a special culture there, that recently has seen great success, and i wanted to be apart of that.
JL: How closely did you follow BU’s Final Four run?
JA: I was in Germany as the NCAA tournament progressed, and my teammates kept talking about how Butler kept knocking off big time schools. So I was very interested in how they were going, and when I got back home I’ve watched every game from their amazing NCAA tournament run.
JL: What are your impressions of Coach Stevens and the coaching staff?
JA: Coach Stevens seems like a great coach. He is committed to not only winning, but developing players, which was very influential in my decision. He is also a great person and I look forward to working with him. Coach Shrewsberry has also impressed me, being very welcoming and helpful throughout the process.
JL: Did the current roster factor into your decision?
JA: Well obviously I looked at their current roster to see where I would hopefully fit in. It will be great in my freshman year to work with great senior guards like Shelvin Mack and Ronald Nored, to develop me and learn the system for the years after.
JL: Most fans will be seeing you for the first time sight unseen. What player do American basketball fans know that you like to compare yourself to?
JA: I don’t really know who I can be compared with to be honest, I like to add different parts of different players’ games into mine. I like the way Manu Ginobilli attacks fearlessly, but I love the way Nash plays with such poise and skill. I like to try and add different parts of my game continually.
JL: What would you say are your strengths on the court?
JA: My advantages on the court would have to be my shooting ability, strength and speed.
JL: Did the coaches give you anything to work on before you come to Indianapolis?
JA: Well I am at the Australian Institute of Sport currently, so we are continually working on aspects of our game to be prepared for the next level (college and Olympic games). At the moment I’m currently working on finishes inside the key, e.g. floaters and runners. Also for a point guard, team management is very important, so that is a continual development for me.
JL: What most excites you about playing college basketball in America?
JA: Coming from Australia, we don’t get massive crowds and such attention, so that will definitely be an interesting part of the experience. But mostly, I’m looking to travelling halfway across the world to get a great experience in both basketball and life, academically and socially. I can’t wait!
Filed under: Butler, Recruiting, The Interview Tagged: | AIS, Australian Institue of Sport, Brad Stevens, BU, Butler, College Basketball, Jackson Aldridge, Micah Shrewsberry, Patty Mills, Point Guard, Recruiting