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Underwood, Players Talk About OSU, Senior Day


GO WILDCATS
Senior Jamar Samuels will play his final home game on Saturday.

GO WILDCATS
Senior Jamar Samuels will play his final home game on Saturday.
GO WILDCATS

March 1, 2012

Associate Head Coach Brad Underwood
On what a win on Saturday would mean to the seniors…
“I think we approach every game the same way.  The one thing we have done very consistently over the time we have been here is that no game is a must win and every game is important.  Every time we turn around we hear someone say that it is an important game.  They are all important in league play.  I think we want to send our seniors out on the right note because they have been huge parts of this program for the last four years.  We want to do it for them, but we are going to approach this like any other game.”

On winning games in the Big 12…
“Any time we win it is a good feeling.  We played pretty well at Texas A&M for the most part.  It is something we want to improve on game-by-game, as we head into postseason play that is all we try to achieve and try to get out of our guys every day.”

On defending Oklahoma State’s Keiton Page…
“It won’t be just one guy on him.  We have a number of guys that will defend him.  He is a tremendous player.  I think he has among the Top 10 scorers all-time at Oklahoma State and the top 3-point shooter and that school has produced a lot of great players.  It’s a credit to him that he gets in the gym and works on his game.  He has great footwork and can really get shots off quickly.  We were lucky the first time around because he missed some shots that he usually makes.  It will be a tremendous challenge for our guys because he is on quite the tear right now.” 

On Jamar Samuels…
“You get pretty emotional when you start talking about guys that have been big parts of the program.  I do not look at it as the time they have been here because it goes by so quickly.  They impact my life as a coach and they impact the university.  It is so fun to see them come in as kids, leave as grown men and be responsible for that. Jamar has had a heck of a career, and he has been an intricate part of the development of this program from top to bottom.  For him, I have no question he will have great memories of Kansas State.”

On the number of games (130) Samuels has played in his career…
“I think it is pretty impressive when you think about it.  Any time you start playing that many games, it means you are getting fairly deep into the postseason.  You are having some success and that is something to look back on and take pride in.  Obviously what Jacob (Pullen) has done here, in terms of the accolades, and to put Jamar in the same breath, which Jamar is, that is pretty good company.”

On Victor Ojeleye’s impact…
“Words would not do it justice.  I think last year was probably his most important time.  He was our leader.  He was our guy.  He was the guy that in the locker room when things were not always roses, he kept everyone in the right frame of mind, and he kept everybody pushing forward.  He showed up every single day as he has his whole career and done nothing but try to help this basketball team, and he is everything that you want a student-athlete to be.  Obviously, his academic honors speak for himself, but as a teammate, he is an unbelievable teammate.  Every single player that has played with Victor over the last four years will remember him.  It may not be for baskets scored, but he has impacted every single person that has been a teammate of his.”

Senior Forward Jamar Samuels
On reminiscing about his first time at K-State…
“I cannot really explain it.  It has gone by so fast.  I remember walking into here like any 17-year-old just looking around and thinking I could do whatever I wanted.  I did not have my mom waking me up anymore.  It just felt different.”

On his first workout with the team…
“I got here and went through one of Scott’s (Greenawalt) workouts.  I called my mom and told her this was not going to work out.  I was 185 walking into the weight room not knowing what was going on.  I had heard that he made Mike (Beasley) throw up.  I was a little scared of that, and I did not know what I was getting myself into.”

On the legacy he wants to leave at K-State…
“I want people to remember the hard work I have put in.  I know I have not had a consistent four years here, but I want everyone to remember me as the guy that worked hard and left everything on the floor.”

On his last games as a Wildcat…
“I told a few guys at Texas A&M that I feel like the old guy in the hour glass, and time is ticking.  I am just trying to get this team as far as I can.”

Senior Forward Victor Ojeleye
On being a leader for his team…
“I think one of the things is always staying consistent and doing what I was supposed to do in my role in coming to practice and working hard and being positive and optimistic about what our team was going to do no matter what is thrown at you at different points in time.  It was just encouraging guys and being a positive influence.”

On the last home game…
“It always has a lot of meaning playing at home.  You always want to protect your home court.  In regards of the game and situation, Saturday is no different than the very first game here we played this year.  What we are doing is just supporting your team and going out there and playing well to try and get a win.”

On playing at K-State…
“I really was not considering that much because I was in prep school.  In high school, I had lower level NAIA or Division II offers.  K-State gave me the opportunity to come here and live out my dream.  I jumped at it, and four years later I am here and thankful for the opportunity.  I have been very fortunate.”