Feb. 8, 2004
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.
This week's featured guest in junior Danny Granger. Danny is a transfer from Bradley who became eligible to play following the fall semester. Danny had made a huge impact on the Lobo program, leading the team in scoring and rebounding since joining the team on December 21, 2003.
Danny is from Metairie, La., and is a 6-8 forward. He is averaging over 20 ppg and 10 rpg, both of which are near to top in the Mountain West Conference. He has already twice been named the MWC Player of the Week and is getting a lot of national recognition for his play with the Lobos.
Below are answers to some of the questions you submitted to Danny.
What position do you see yourself playing at the next level, and what do you think you need to improve on to get there? (Ricky D.)
DG: I think I would play a small forward, or even a shooting guard at the next level. I think I need to work on my ball handling skills and my outside jump shot, and I need to get stronger.
What other kinds of sports do you like to watch other than basketball? (Wheat Ridge, Colo.)
DG: I love football. That's my favorite sport. My favorite team is the New Orleans Saints. I was born and raised there.
How do you prepare for those big games against the tough MWC? (Emony)
DG: It's a mental preparation. You need to have the right mental mindset and be focused before the game and get a lot of sleep the night before the game.
Why were you held to only 12 pts in Las Vegas? (Your cousin Johnny Granger III - Metairie, La.)
DG: I only had 12 points because you weren't there to watch me. You should have come to the game and I would have scored more points.
Hey Danny! I went to Kenny's Basketball Camp this summer and it was cool to see a few Lobos there. How did it feel being around Kenny and meeting Allen Iverson and Gary Payton? By the way, you got mad skills! Keep it up! (Danielle - Rio Rancho, N.M.)
DG: It was a lot of fun to see NBA players, especially Allen Iverson. I like working with all of the kids and I'm looking forward to doing it again next year.
Danny, how do you like playing in The Pit? (David - Albuquerque, N.M.) .)
DG: I love it! It's like no other feeling in the world. The energy there...it's great!
Hi, Danny! You've been playing really well, this season. How do you feel that you have helped the Lobos this season? (Maria - Albuquerque, N.M.)
DG: I think I've given the Lobos a more experienced player. We have a lot of freshmen on the team. I've helped with the leadership and brought in another post player to go along with David Chiotti.
What single player have you found to be the toughest opponent so far this year? (Robert -Albuquerque, N.M.)
DG: I'd have to say practicing against David Chiotti has been my toughest opponent so far. He's a real strong, physical player who is an excellent post defender.
Hey Danny, just wanted to know, who you think the best player on your team is? (Sam)
DG: David Chiotti. He does the little things and he doesn't get a lot of recognition for it, but he's one of the main reasons why we win. He helps me out a lot. He usually guards the other team's best post player and he is a great offensive player.
Is there an NBA player that you model your game after? (Ben - Cedar Crest, N.M.)
DG: Probably Tracy McGrady or Kobe Bryant and Small forwards like that. Even Carmello Anthony. Mostly I try to model my game after the bigger guards or small forwards.
Hey Danny, I was wondering, do you have a nickname? (Amber Mader - Rio Rancho , N.M.)
DG: "Danny Gee." My dad is a Danny Granger, Sr. and I'm the junior, so everyone from home calls me "Danny Gee."
Danny, how is the competition in the Mountain West Conference versus the Missouri Valley Conference? (Mike S. - Albuquerque, N.M.)
DG: Division 1 is pretty level across the board. Differences are very minor. The only major difference between the Mountain West Conference and the Missouri Valley Conference is bigger posts and stronger players. This league is more physical than the Missouri Valley, but the MVC was still tough. The biggest difference is the size of the post players. The Mountain West is bigger.
Hey Danny! Who is the person on the team that has the most leadership qualities and what do you guys talk about in the paint when you circle up? (Gabriella - Albuquerque, N.M.)
DG: Definitely Ryan Ashcraft. He keeps us focused on what we have to do and leads by example. When we are in the huddle we are setting our offensive or defensive plays for the next possession and making sure everyone knows who they are guarding and what play has been called.
Danny, how do you think that you guys will finish off the season? (Sam - Albuquerque, N.M.)
DG: Our ultimate goal is to get to the NCAA Tournament and I fell that we are capable of doing that, but we have to take it one game at a time. You can't start looking ahead.