Terrico White Discusses Gold Medal Trip To New Zealand
OXFORD, Miss. – Ole Miss rising sophomore guard Terrico White spoke about his recent experience as a member of the gold medal-winning United States under-19 team. Under the direction of University of Pittsburgh head coach Jamie Dixon, Team USA went 9-0 in the FIBA U19 World Championships and defeated Greece 88-80 this past Sunday to capture the world title.
White was instrumental in the Americans’ success, as the 2009 SEC Freshman of the Year averaged 7.4 points and 2.6 rebounds in nine contests, adding six blocks and four steals.
Below is a transcript of his conversation with media members on Wednesday.
Talk about winning the gold medal. What was it like in the championship game?
“When the clock his zero, everybody was just celebrating. The (United States) U19 team hadn’t won it since 1991, so we were really excited about that.”
What was it like playing international ball? Was it difficult to adjust to?
“At first it kind of was, because some of the calls that I’m used to they don’t call out there. So I had to get used to it really quickly.”
How did you do individually?
“I think I did pretty good. My focus was really just to get better on defense. That was the main focus going over there. My offense was pretty straight.”
What made the other good teams there (like Greece and Australia) tough to play against?
“They do a lot of ball screens and screen-and-rolls. They do a lot of screens.”
What was it like playing alongside so many other great players?
“In the first couple of days in Colorado, we got really cool. After that, the only thing we needed to do was carry it onto the court. We did that and kept winning games.
What was New Zealand like?
“It was raining the whole time, and it was real cold. Some players were getting sick with the flu. We didn’t really do anything else, just practice and play games.”
Did you stay healthy or come down with anything?
“I came down with a sore throat, but that was it.”
How was the food?
“The food was horrible. The worst thing I had was lamb. But we ate like the same stuff everyday. We ate some fish and fries everyday.”
How did this experience help you going into your second year at Ole Miss? What can you bring from this summer to help you this fall?
“This experience has really helped me being a leader, being more vocal with the team.”
What was it like playing for Coach Dixon, who is known for his defensive mentality?
“His main focus is defense, so playing with him makes you play defense and want to have fun playing defense. He really helped me get better with my defense.”
What will you do with your gold medal?
“I plan on framing it with my jersey and other (Team USA) stuff they gave us.”
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