As we do each summer, PowerMizzou.com is in the process of talking to every Missouri scholarship basketball player that is on campus. Over the next couple of weeks, we will post a Q&A with every member of the team. Today, we talk to incoming transfer Deuce Bello.
PowerMizzou: I know you were a little banged up last year. How's your health?
Deuce Bello: "I'm almost back a hundred percent. Been working hard on rehab every day with PB, our trainer. Most days, I've been practicing with the team. Ready to go full force."
PM: Was it your knee?
DB: "It was my shin."
PM: How long does it seem like since you've been out on a basketball floor in competition?
DB: "It feels like ten years. It's been about six to eight months. Still doing stuff basketball wise, just not going out full force. I'm almost there. Doctors are saying good things and like I said, just continue to work hard."
PM: The coach you committed to leaves. What was going through your head?
DB: "A lot was going through my head. Confused. I love coach Haith. He's a great guy. He's the reason I came to this school. But stuff happens in life. You've just got to deal with it. Can't do nothing about it. I like Missouri so I stayed. Coach Anderson he's a great guy, player's coach and I like him so it's cool."
PM: Did you know much about coach Anderson when he got the job?
DB: "I didn't know coach Anderson at first. I knew a player, his point guard at Central Missouri and he gave me some good things about him, said he was a player coach and lets you play the game. He played at the school so it's home for him. That was another good thing."
PM: In your first month with coach how do you feel like what you do fits what he wants to run?
DB: "Right now, we've been focusing on defense and that's the main thing you've got to play defense to get offense. We just vibe very well. He's a pretty cool guy."
PM: You mentioned last year working some at point guard. Are you still doing that or are you more of a shooting guard again?
DB: "We haven't really got into that yet in practice. We don't have all our guys here yet, so I'm playing a little one, two and three. But whatever he wants me to play, I'm ready to play."
PM: Beyond getting healthy, what's your main focus this summer?
DB: "This sit out year, I got stronger mentally. I got my body stronger. I think just getting my teammates involved and being an energy guy. I bring a lot of energy on defense and once the younger players see that, they'll want to do the same thing. That can get us wins."
PM: Going into last year, everybody kind of knew who the guys were going to be. With more playing time and minutes open, how competitive is practice?
DB: "At first it was kind of laid back, everybody was trying to get to know coach and coach was trying to get to know us. But this past week, past two weeks, it's been great. It's been really getting competitive, especially defense. Guys playing hard, diving for loose balls. It's good just seeing us grow."
PM: Whether it's a new guy or somebody back from last year, is there anybody that has really jumped out at you?
DB: "Everybody's improved, but the people that really catch my eye is J3 and Wes (Clark). Those guys really worked. I've seen those guys since I've been here and they've really grown, especially as leaders.
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