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Q&A with Julian Gamble (Part II)

Two weeks ago, I caught up with University of Miami redshirt freshman big man Julian Gamble after he participated in a basketball/religious venture to Africa with Athletes in Action. On Wednesday, I posted the details of his 13-day trip overseas where Julian said he had a life-changing experience meeting orphans, a fun time playing international basketball and much more (Q&A Part I).

In this second part of my interview with Julian, we got a chance to talk about his rough upbringing in North Carolina. He told me how his single mother struggled to raise him and his older sister and brother and how he himself struggled, attending 14 different schools from the time he started kindergarten until he graduated. Gamble, who didn't really become a hot commodity until his junior year of high school, told me he was more than happy to accept a scholarship from Miami and says being a Cane is a dream come true. He said he passed on offers from Kentucky, Florida and Tennessee because of the bond he built with coach Frank Haith, another Carolina guy, who was able to convince him UM's basketball program was headed in the right direction. The following is the rest of what he and I talked about.

Q: Who was the first person to put a basketball in your hands and when did you first start playing?
A: When I was smaller, I’d have to say it was my father. Just watching TV and during the time Michael JgambleJordan and all those guys like that were playing. I just watched basketball, that’s pretty much how I spent all my time with my dad. He took me out to the court one day. He never seriously played basketball. He always would mess around though. And then I went out there shooting and I fell in love with the game. At first it was all about spending time with my father, but as time progressed I just really found the love for the game. I didn’t get serious or start thinking about going to college until around 10th grade maybe. I was a late bloomer. I really didn’t come around until my 11th grade year. That’s when I started getting my offers and things like that. In my 10th grade year, I had a lot of mid-major offers.

Q: When did you go through your big growth spurt?
A: In eighth grade I was 6-1. By the time I was in ninth I may have been 6-4. From the 9th to 10th, I grew up two more inches. I’ve grown up a little bit since I got here.

Q: How tall are you now?
A: I’m not even sure. The last time I measured I was 6-9. But just from talking to my teammates and stuff today they say I’ve grown. I might be 6-9 or 6-10.

FrankhaithQ: What have you learned about college basketball since you’ve been here?
A: My first impression of coming here and seeing practice and seeing the game, it’s much, much faster than in high school. That was my first adaptation to make. My first impression was the energy level. In high school, the best players would just take the game over. Some teams might play good defense. But in college, everybody can do every thing. It’s not like anybody can step in and average 20 points a game. I think I’ve improved majorly from just working with coach Mac and working with my teammates and talking to coach Haith and things like that.

Q: Where have you improved or need improvement?
A: One area I need to improve is my strength and my conditioning. Those are two areas I’m looking to improve on in this offseason right here. Also, my defense – its something that would keep me on the court and give me opportunities to play. I’m not the type of guy to get stats or whatever. I just want to help the team. I want to help the team win. That’s the role I play.

Q: I know coach said you’ve lost a lot of weight and toned up. Now, it’s time to brag about what you’ve done.
A: I’ve lost around 25 pounds since I got here. I was 265 when I came in. I was 239 when I weighed myself now. I’m definitely going to pick up some weight though, lifting in this offseason, muscle, things like that. But I lost a lot of fat, nearly 30 pounds of it. I feel like a new man. The biggest difference is my quickness, my jumping, my all around game is just a lot more easier when I’m lighter. Being as tall as I am, my knees hurt when I’m heavier. Now that I’m lighter my knee pains aren’t present or a major issue like I was before.

Q: A lot has obviously changed since the day you accepted a scholarship to Miami. This team has gone from last place in the ACC to the second round of the NCAA tournament in one year and now some experts are saying you guys are a Top 10 team. What’s changed from your perspective?
A: From my personal perspective when I was first getting recruiting, coach Haith was telling me he was Ummens_hoops going to change the face of the program. I had faith in him. I knew people who knew coach Haith being from Carolina and they said he was a man of his word. I didn’t need to hear much else because I believed in him. Being here and going through last season and seeing exactly what he said would happen, it was really good. It’s just making everyone around the nation see we’re trying to work toward being a force for a long time coming. It’s all about hardwork. It’s not as if somebody says were going to be good and its over. It always about hard work for us and progress.

Q: That being said, expectations are going to be different next season. The pressure is going to be different now that you guys are where you are. How do you think the guys are going to handle the preseason hype?
A: I don’t think its going to change at all. It just kind of shows our hardwork has paid off. But at the same time we’re a humble group of individuals. We’re not the type of people if the spotlight is on us we’re going to walk around and not see people for what they are. We’re people like everybody else. Just because we won 20 games doesn’t mean we’re going to walk around here like we don’t know anybody. We’re still going to be the same people and I feel we’re going to approach things like we did before with that hard work ethic and the desire to want to improve. I don’t think because the spotlight is on us, we’re going to relax. That’s all the more reason to work even harder because people are going to be coming at us even harder. That hardwork mentality is going to stick no matter how bright that light gets.

Q: Are the guys excited by those expectations? ESPN's Andy Katz has you guys ranked eighth in his preseason poll. Also, you’re playing at Kentucky and at home against Ohio State. Is there a lot more excitement in general?
Mcclintondribble A: Of course we’re excited because these are things outside of playing basketball these are things we dream of, playing in the big games, playing at Kentucky and things like that. So, there is a level of excitement. But at the same time, this is a very large task we have to tackle so we have to work that much harder to be able to accomplish that goal. We just don’t want to go to Kentucky to say we played them. We don’t want to play Ohio State to say we played them. We’re trying to win those games. So, in order to win those games, we got to work hard to put ourselves in position to do that.

Q: When is that you guys will start working with coaches again?
A: We’re not with the coaches, but I myself will call the coach and ask them what type of things I need to work on. They’ll describe the drill and I’ll go and work on it myself. It’s all about being with our strength coach, lifting weights. We’re trying to prepare ourselves as much as we can. I want to have myself ready so I won’t have to go back and do any work I should have done already. We haven’t had a workout where everybody was together. People have been going back home and things like that. We won’t really have our full workout until I think the 30th of June -- the Monday after Summer [Session 2]. I think its going to be a level of excitement. I mean the truth is, we’re all men, but we miss our boys. We have a lot of fun together. So, it’s not like when we see everybody , “OK, your back.’ That will be our prime moment to get together and work hard. When the whole team gets back together there is going to be focus because we know this is going to be a big year for us.

Q: Talk about your role this year. Ray Hicks, Anthony King are gone. Coach talked a lot about you being that reliable post option that Anthony was. How do you see yourself in the mix with Jimmy Graham, Dwayne Collins and Cyrus McGowan?
JimmygrahamA: I think for the most part it will be a rotation like it was last year. With Jimmy being a senior, Cyrus being a junior and Dwayne being a junior, I’m going to be learning from them more than anything else. If worse comes to worse, I’ll defer to them because it’s going to be my first turn around. I think the rotation will be in that two in and two out we did last year. It’s really going to be great because all four of us bring different things to the table that will be helpful to the team. I got full confidence in coach Haith. He knows what we do well and how we’ll play well together for the better of the team.

Q: I think most people would consider you more of a true center type prospect than those other guys who are more like natural power forward. Do you see yourself as a center?
A: I don’t want to say I’m going to be Anthony King’s replacement or I’m going to do what King did as a player over his career. It’s extremely difficult to replace a guy like him not only as a player, but off the court with his leadership and everything. My role this year will be trying to be as reliable a post player as possible, doing what I can do to help the team like grabbing rebounds, blocking shots and taking charges so we win. I know we have a tremendous talent level. I don’t have to be one of the people to score points. We got a lot of people that can score points. I know I can do the small things and try to help them out.

Comments

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Why m--t you continue to use w--ds that req---e dashes. Is it som----ng they teach at Du---hh U?

Or do you th--k that it actually cr--tes some kind of ex--a emp---is like the f-n whom uses o-e exclamtion po---t after his name.

BRAILLE CLASS

See dat dere he done did it agian. Hit me up one more time. RUN YA MOUTH B---H!!!

"The more we answer to CANESRULE the more ammo he has."

Please someone stop CocaineCane's bleeding.

PAINLESS

Watch your mouth ho'. I'm bleeding because cokdrool "drained" me & burst a blood vessel(CLOSET CANE COK SUCKER). Cokdrool bleeds because her periods on. Now she wants a day off...

Hell naw. Your mouth still works. RUN IT!!!

Watch your mouth ho'. I'm bleeding because cokdrool "drained" me & burst a blood vessel(CLOSET CANE COK SUCKER). Cokdrool bleeds because her periods on. Now she wants a day off...

Hell naw. Your mouth still works. RUN IT!!! -CocaineCane

Typical illiterate cane fan flapping his pie hole. Keep up the good work "Jamelle", you're making Randy the linguist very proud.

WOULD YOU LIKE TO SUPERSIZE THAT?

hey cross-dresser, are you prejudiced against black people?

SPEAK IN CODE

Looks like you're the one with racism on your mind. YOU drew that conclusion from YOUR mind. RACIST PIG !

your answer is a non-answer ...
are you prejudiced against black people?

yes or no

check the mirror piggo's answer is check the mirror piggo's answer - not mine as you obviously presumed.

FALSE ACCUSATIONS YET AGAIN

However, I do believe he repsonded as every fan on here would to such an off-color question that is unapplicable to the topic at hand in reponse to a fan of Duhhhh U purposely posting as an illiterate SOB.

Look at the bright side, with Cocainecane, you have yet another fair weather fan to attend games. If this pace keeps up, you may be up to 61% capacity by the time the 2008 season kicks off.

PREJUDICED AGAINST GREEN

Coach Shannon earned a college degree from a top university ...
yet, you make fun of the black man's elocution, fitness & intelligence ...
because the black man talks too black ...
your answer is a non-answer ...
are you prejudiced against black people?

yes or no

"imitation is the sincerest form of flattery" - jolly giant

"not mine as you obviously presumed" - canesrule

"you make fun of the black man's elocution, fitness & intelligence" - green peace

SLOW LEARNER

because the green man talks too green

STILL DON'T GET IT DO YOU

Posting on here under someone else's name is beyond my comprehension. You can't possibly be implying that some would be posting racist remarks under your name could you?

COMPARE & CONTRAST WRITING STYLES

Better check your own closet Green. You're throwin around unfounded racism statements. Not word one was said about the "black man" until you started hurling racism charges. Apparently in your clouded mind you see the word "Jamelle" as racist.

SHALLOW

GREEN U HAVE ACHIEVED YOUR GOAL AND RUINED THIS BLOG. U HAVE MADE THIS BLOG ABOUT U, NOT ABOUT THE CANES. ENJOY...

assumed identity (4:40p)
ERSATZ

you know, cross-dresser ... I could press the issue ; )
but in the spirit of our forefathers who famously declared:
"we hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal";
"with malice toward none, with charity for all";
"where the white women at"
I will relent : )
HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA

assumed identity (4:40p)
ERSATZ

Posted by: green | July 04, 2008 at 11:28 PM

The only ASSUMED identity here is some blogger named GREEN.

Show yourself and be a person not a FAKE COLOR name on a blog!

Green you are the worst thing that ever happened to this blog. Go away!

Green, it is obvious that your presence here is detrimental to the success of this blog. Plese stop posting.

Wow. This blog really went down the shitter. Manny, any updates on the football side of things? Need some news already.

For everybody else, please for the love of God stop feeding the troll. It's obvious that she's just an immature prepubescent little girl. Let her be.

"where the white women at" - string beans

Not sure, but I do know where to find one of the most ignorant and hypocritical fans of Duhhhh U that I have ever come across.

Banned by your own fair weather fans. I know it takes some serious skill to offend these camo wearing nincompoops.

VETO GREEN

Green, show yorself, quit hiding.... Be a man


I will blow you if you do.......

assumed identity (1:58a)
ERSATZ

GREEN U HAVE ACHIEVED YOUR GOAL AND RUINED THIS BLOG.

Posted by: SOUP | July 04, 2008 at 09:22 PM

Green you are the worst thing that ever happened to this blog. Go away!

Posted by: jorge | July 04, 2008 at 11:45 PM

Green, it is obvious that your presence here is detrimental to the success of this blog. Plese stop posting.

Posted by: Robert | July 05, 2008 at 12:05 AM

http://www.romanceclass.com/miscr/lovestory/dtl467

86Cane aka SOUP aka tom popadak aka jorge aka Robert aka sybil

yet, you stalk, beseech me like a spurned lover ...
UNREQUITED

Green...you need to post over at Canespace too! And if you get the chance email me at host@canespace.com

Posted by: 86Cane | July 30, 2007 at 10:23 AM

Green...you crack me up! And, U work this blog HARD!!! Who are U and why do U refuse to post at Canespace?

Posted by: Soup | August 19, 2007 at 12:21 PM

GREEN...why don't U join us for the LIVE chat tonight at Canespace?

Posted by: SOUP | September 04, 2007 at 09:53 AM

Manny ... Your blog was really rocking today! 121 comments in a couple hours. But here's the question everyone wants to know: Who the heck is GREEN on your blog?

Posted by: 86Cane | September 04, 2007 at 08:29 PM

I tried to get Green to post here but he will not

Posted by: SOUP | October 01, 2007 at 05:52 PM

Green...U crack me up! I don't always agree with your posts or the topics U pick to talk about, but damn, U get an "A" for effort my friend!!!

U should join us Tuesday night ....
See ya 'round...

Posted by: 86Cane | December 09, 2007 at 12:46 PM

Green...I just wanted to let you know that you make this blog so much better than it could be without you.

Posted by: 86Cane | April 28, 2008 at 10:01 PM

GREEN...U ARE AN ALL STAR BLOGGER!

Posted by: 86Cane | June 08, 2008 at 08:42 PM

Sweating bullets...

Green give us courage!

Posted by: 86Cane | June 08, 2008 at 09:46 PM

What's that? Green, you work for the Miami Herald? In the IT department? Oh my! So it is TRUE! So that's why you will NOT post at Canespace.

Posted by: 86Cane | June 21, 2008 at 12:35 AM

http://wiki.answers.com/Q/How_do_you_know_if_your_in_love_or_obsessed_with_a_guy
pining for what you can't have ...
GRASS IS ALWAYS GREENER

http://www.amazon.com/review/R1ZFPCLW20ON5B/ref=cm_cr_rdp_perm
get help pronto!
INTERVENTION

Green...You may not realize this but people come here to read about the Canes, not about Green, or your comments about me.

Until you get this and stop posting your nonsense you will continue to ruin this blog. End of story.

You're a rambling moron "Green". Go look at yourself in the mirror some more you grammar challenged DOLT.

I'm getting the impression that even the imposter canesrule doesn't like this green character.

BLOGGER'S UNITE

If Duhhh U got as upset over one so-called fan's blogged opinion, as they should over lack of attendance, every game would be a sell-out.

MISDIRECTED ANGST

Until then the only thing you can brag about is:

1-9
16-16
6-6
5-7

FAILING THE ACC TEST

I'm getting the impression that even the imposter canesrule doesn't like this green character.

BLOGGER'S UNITE

If Duhhh U got as upset over one so-called fan's blogged opinion, as they should over lack of attendance, every game would be a sell-out.

MISDIRECTED ANGST

Until then the only thing you can brag about is:

1-9
16-16
6-6
5-7

FAILING THE ACC TEST

"There's no game experience on the roster, but many think there shouldn't be much of a drop-off in production at this position from last season." - Rivals on Miami's QBs

A drop-off from 15TD's, 20 INT's and the 110th ranked offense in the nation???

Duhhh U has indeed become the Duke of the South...... and I'm not talking about academics.

GREEN DEVILS

Slive recalls standing on the field of the Superdome during the closing moments of LSU's BCS victory over Ohio State last January and hearing the crowd break into a chant of "S-E-C, S-E-C."

When was Duhhhh U last relevant......

B-I-G E-A-S-T

Once dismissed by Madison Avenue types due to its schools' largely rural following, the SEC has recently enjoyed unprecedented national prominence. League schools have captured the past two BCS championships (Florida in 2006 and LSU in '07) as well as consecutive men's (Florida in '06 and '07) and women's ('07 and '08) basketball titles.

On the tube, SEC football games on CBS garnered an average rating of 3.5 last season, the network's highest in eight years, while the league's ESPN (2.7) and ESPN2 (1.3) audiences were the highest of any conference.

TUNED IN WHILE U TUNED OUT

Green...You may not realize this but people come here to read about the Canes, not about Green, or your comments about me.

Until you get this and stop posting your nonsense you will continue to ruin this blog. End of story.

Posted by: SOUP | July 05, 2008 at 01:16 PM

I come here to read Green's Comments about all the idiots that write on this blog. What the hell else would I read?

"What the hell else would I read?" - DAU

Valid point! Since U are rarely mentioned on the real sports sites such as ESPN or SI, you may have to resort to getting your minimal coverage off the local biased blogs.

DUHHHH U = GREEN'S AUDIENCE
SEC = NATIONAL AUDIENCE

I would like to light some fireworks under Green's behind!

Green is a dill weed.

Greeen is an idiot.

Posted by: Pedro | July 06, 2008 at 12:18 AM

I would like to light some fireworks under Green's behind!

Posted by: BostonCane | July 06, 2008 at 12:21 AM

Green is a dill weed.

Posted by: CaneRasta | July 06, 2008 at 12:22 AM


All posts by 86Cane.

We all know how how 2008 will turn out!

1-9
16-16
6-6
5-7

got my back, DAU : )

Once dismissed by Madison Avenue types due to its schools' largely rural following, the SEC

Posted by: cross-dresser | July 05, 2008 at 08:15 PM

athens
auburn
baton rouge
columbia
gainesville
knoxville
lexington
little rock
oxford
starkville
tuscaloosa

ATLAS SHRUGGED

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2008/writers/stewart_mandel/06/24/tv/1.html
you lifted stewart mandel's words ...
NO-NO

Whether or not the SEC ultimately chooses to create such a network, it's safe to assume that all Division I-A leagues will continue to closely monitor the progress of the Big Ten Network. The Big 12 explored starting its own network two years ago but ultimately passed; however, the ACC (with its current network contracts expiring in 2010) ... could eventually explore the same route.

-- stewart mandel

Here's what the colossal moron "Canesrule" has been posting just down the street. C'mon Cane fan with a brain, call this idiot out.

"By canesrule 9 'ships
July 6, 2008 3:38 PM | Link to this
When all is said and done Teebow is a glorified fullback with better than average speed. He has been spoiled by an SEC that is playing stone age football, and is light years behind Bill Young, Da U’s new defensive coordinator. Teebow will not get away with the floaties he throws in the SEC because a ravenouz cane secondary will pick him off all day long. With Harris and Bailey looking improbable on the D line, Teebow may have all day to throw on some passes, but Da U will come thru: Canes 31 Da Turds 24. Take it to Da Bank."

Apparently Canestool didn't see Tim's 49 yard cannon shot that hit a full speed running Mr. Harvin PERFECTLY on the numbers. In case you are still wearing your blow up helmet Canestool (and he IS), just ask the ENTIRE nation about what Mr. Tebow brings to the table. YOU, Canestool, are an embarrassment to "DuhU"

Nobody saw that but you. Tebow IS a glorified fullback. Much like Jared Lorenzen only he plays for ESPN biased Fla>

Of course no fans of DUHU saw it, you were too busy getting BLOWNOUT by A&M. Speaking of BLOWOUTS, DUHU's swiss cheese defense is going to get roasted on 9/6. You inflatable helmet wearing morons just don't get it. You haven't seen the bottom yet. Randy "Marble Mouth" Shannon is NOT taking you anywhere. He completely lost the team last year. But it's a new year right inflatable helmet cane fan? FOOLS ! This year will show clearly what you get in big boy football when you hire a 4th choice coach. Good luck with that guy.

BLOWOUTS AWAIT your non-existent depth chart.

correction (8:18p): fayetteville not little rock

Select comments from inflatable helmet cane fans:

"Everybody is right, The pro's are picking 9/3"-NO..NO ONE is picking 9-3. You pulled that out of your imagination BUCKO.

"But I'll tell you, mentality is 3/4 of the battle"- INCORRECT..mentality is 3/4 of the battle when teams are evenly matched. When other teams have far more depth than you, they BEAT you 9 times out of 10. And sorry cane fan, a great recruiting class doesn't depth make.

"Shannon continually had his players confused and anxious on game day.
Every player on the field looked at the sideline after every play to see who was coming in to replace them.
When things went bad, it took Randy too long to adjust."- This isn't the result of some breakdown cane fan, this is the state of the coaching staff. Take off your blinders cane fan. Marble mouth is WAY over his head.

"No matter how you spin it Shannon was mediocre at best, horrible at worst."- A rare glimpse of a cane fan being objective. Cane fan thinks Randy's incompetence is magically gone now. What exactly has transpired that suddenly makes Marble Mouth some sideline genius? NOTHING !

"I'm feeling it to soup." - Well here's a news flash for you inflatable helmet guy, Wake Forest is "feeling it" too.

You guys don't seem to get it. Winning just doesn't happen overnight. Teams have to LEARN to win. The highly suspect depth chart and a bunch of just out of high school kids does not a winning team make. I haven't seen ANY expert come even close to picking UM to win the ACC COASTAL division people. We're not even talking conference here, we're talking conference DIVISION. Get excited when Miami wins the Atlantic Coast Conference COASTAL division. UM is years from even getting a mention nationally, that's not a mean spirited swipe at UM, it's REALITY PEOPLE. WAKE UP !

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