Dec. 4, 2003
Throughout the 2003-04 basketball season, GoLobos.com will be conducting "Ask the Coach/Player" sessions with different Lobo men's basketball coaches and players.
Below are answers to some of the questions you submitted to Lobo freshman Kellen Walter over the last two weeks. Don't forget the Lobos face Texas Tech on Saturday, December 6 at 1:00 p.m. (M.S.T.) in The Pit. Tickets are still available and can be purchased at the UNM Ticket Office or by calling (505) 925-LOBO (5626).
Q&A With Kellen Walter
Kellen, what kind of person is Ritchie McKay? Does he yell a lot in practice? (Chochiti Pueblo, N.M.)
KW: Only when we make mistakes, big mistakes. He's real fair when he's critical of you, but it depends on how we are playing that day.
Kellen, how would you describe your game to those who have not seen you play? (Dave, Albuquerque, N.M.)
KW: I'm 6-10 and I like to move without the ball and catch and shoot. It's kind of rare that you see guys my height step out and primarily catch and shoot, but I'm working on being a real versatile player. Once I can get my body bigger, thicker and stronger I will be able to be more versatile and go inside and outside.
Kellen, who is the most underrated Lobo men's basketball player on this year's team? (Phil, Albuquerque, N.M.)
KW: I would have to say David Chiotti. He doesn't get much publicity and when you recognize the top centers in the Mountain West, nobody really says his name. I think by the end of the year he will have made a name for himself.
Kellen, I got the chance to watch you play in high school do you think you will see a lot of time this season or are you preparing for next season? (James Duran, Fruita Monument, Colo.)
KW: Right now I am just building towards my future. My role is just to step in and set screens, catch-and-shoot whenever I get the opportunity. I am just trying to gain some experience this year and build towards the future.
How does it feel to be the brother of (Arizona State University starting Quarterback)Andrew Walter? Do you want as much publicity as he gets being the star Quarterback that he is. (Grand Junction, Colo.)
KW: Well, we play two different sports and a lot of people still don't know who he is. My brother's not Carson Palmer...yet. He definitely will get some big-time recognition and he deserves it. He is just a good reminder for me that it's in my genes and if he can do it - Why not me?
When did you realize that you could play at a division 1 level? (Grand Junction, Colo.)
KW: It had always been a dream of mine, but I realized it could happen when I started contacting Coach McKay and the rest of the coaching staff at New Mexico. I had gotten offers from so many D-II and junior colleges, but Colorado State and New Mexico were the only schools I could have played for. My high school coaches told me I would have a shot, as long as I continued to work hard.
Why are you the number 1? Are you saying something when you where that number? (Grand Junction, Colo.)
KW: I really don't know how I got the number. It was the only one open. There's really no meaning behind it.
What do you see your role being on this year's team? (Mark, Santa Fe, N.M.)
KW: Just stepping in whenever the coaches need me. I if do get out on the court, setting screens, defending, rebounding, and catching-and-shooting. I try not to do too much, just stay within my role. It will be pretty minimal but that's just going to be my role this year.
What type of player do you see yourself evolving into by your fourth year? (Rob, Albuquerque, N.M.)
KW: I hope to have put on a lot of muscle and develop more of an inside game, while maintaining my outside game. I just think my versatility will be my biggest advantage. I hope to develop into a better defender and rebounder. I want to use this 6-10 body to give me all of the advantages I can.
Are the walk-ons treated any different from the rest of the players? (Espanola, N.M.)
KW: No, we are not treated any different. Everyone's treated equally. This coaching staff is real fair about that and they don't care where you came from. Once you are on the team, you are on the team. There's no discrimination whatsoever.