Player Spotlight: Burke Smith
At 6'11, Burke Smith was the tallest camper at the first Academic Elite Session of the summer. Even with the obvious height advantage, the rising Junior doesn't see himself as a one dimensional big man. Instead, the Virginia native has been working on his craft as a shooter and a ball handler in preparation for the winter season.
How would you describe your game?
Smith: I would describe my game as being very versatile. Since I'm 6'11 I can move very well, I can run the floor very well. I'm cool posting up, cool going out on the wing, so I feel like I can play anywhere on the floor. I also feel like I can defend really well on the ball, so that is also a huge advantage for me.
Out of all the things you mentioned, what part of your game would you say is the best?
Smith: Probably running the floor and being able to shoot the ball. Running the floor you can get easy layups and rebounds on fast breaks. I also think I shoot the ball really well.
Between this year's camp and last year's Future All-American camp, what would you say is the biggest thing you added to your game?
Smith: The biggest thing I added is being more athletic; becoming faster, stronger, having a higher vertical. Those thing have really helped my game.
What skills do you still think you need to work on?
Burke: Offensively, really. Just dribbling and improved shots. More lateral speed too, so I can be quicker on the ball.
Where do you draw inspiration from to be better, and to keep improving yourself and your game?
Burke: Just watching guys on TV, knowing that I want to play on TV one day. I watch basketball at every level, and that's really what makes me want to get better.
Off the court what do you like to do?
Burke: Off the court? I'm usually on the court. But when I'm not I like to just chill and watch TV.
What's something you have recently added to your game?
Burke: A little bit of a handle. Last year I feel like I couldn't handle the ball at all, so I feel like I'm getting a lot better there.