Blue Devil Nation Premium caught up with Mason Plumlee who just helped lead his Christ School team to their third consecutive state championship. The following is an in depth and exclusive interview where he talks of that game. He also touches on playing against and with Ryan Kelly, his brothers Miles and Marshall Plumlee, the upcoming all star games and his plans for the future. Enjoy the interview -
Your Christ School team won another state championship game. Can you tell me about the game?
It was great. It was probably the most fulfilling out of the three (CS has won three consecutive state titles). It was the expectation all year for us and anything less than winning would have been a disappointment. There were a lot of mixed emotions but it was a relief. But it was more happiness than anything.
Have you thought about the fact that your high school career is over and that after some All Star games, you'll next dribble the ball in Durham?
[private] In terms of getting ready for Duke I am, but I want to enjoy the last semester with my teammates and the people I have been here with for three years. I'm just trying to enjoy the rest of the year here.
Can you look back and reflect on your Christ School experiences?
I've learned a ton of stuff on and off the court, but it's more just the people I've been with and the players I've been able to play with made it more fun and such an enjoyable experience.
When you first moved from Indiana to North Carolina, did you see yourself being as successful as you are today?
I really didn't . Especially my first year. I thought we had a really good team that wasn't expected to win the state. I could have never imagined we'd have won three championships in three years which is pretty awesome.
How often do you talk to Miles?
I talked to him after we won the state tournament. He was happy for us and congratulated us and everything.
What has Miles had to say about his experience at Duke thus far?
He just said there are ups and downs and that it's not always easy but overall he enjoys it.
You were named to the prestigious McDonald's All American team. While growing up, did you think you would attain that status?
Yeah, it would be easy to say now that's what I wanted but I didn't ... the first time I decided it was something I wanted to reach was when I went to watch the 2005 game in South Bend, Indiana. I think Josh McRoberts got the MVP in that game and that was the first time I saw one, so ...
Will it be odd not to go right into AAU ball this summer?
Yeah. It is kind of weird because I love AAU and I will miss it. Like you said earlier, I have got the McDonald's, the Jordan game and the Nike Hoop Summit, so I will be a little busy.
Tell me a little more about the Hoop Summit ...
It will be played April 18th and we'll go out there 3 or 4 days. It's in Portland. John Wall is on our team who Duke is recruiting.
When the McDonald's committee selects you, the Jordan and so on. How do they contact you? Or how do you find out you've been selected to play in those games?
Well, the McDonald's stuff came in the mail and once that happened a couple of people who are voters called me or called my coach. I think Bob Gibbons called my AAU coach. Then like the Jordan Classic, the Nike guy called my Dad and said I was invited. Then I got something in the mail later. The Hoop Summit? They called my coach.
Back to the championship game for a minute. You went up against your future teammate Ryan Kelly and beat those guys twice this year. Were they a little tougher this time out?
Yeah. I think they tried to slow it down a lot more and were more ready for us. I mean, the first ... we kind of knew as a team going in we weren't going to beat them by thirty plus again. We just played our game and came out on top.
What are the differences you see between Ryan Kelly's game and your game?
Well! I figure he's a pretty good shooter. I think we are more similar than different. I don't know ... on his team he has to do the majority of the scoring. I've been fortunate to play with people like Lakeem Jackson, Reggie and a little bit more of a balanced team.
Was there any type of rivalry that developed between you guys? I mean you both signed at Duke and that kind of thing. Did that add a little something extra when you guys met?
Yeah, I guess. From the outside looking in, it's kind of like that. But for us it was just our team against theirs. The most important thing was a championship.
Do you think you can play alongside Kelly?
Do you see Miles as a more inside oriented guy next season?
I've played with Miles my whole life and he can do a lot more than just play inside. I think with me coming in next year and Ryan and having more depth inside, he'll be able to go inside-out more. Right now, he is just down on the block.
Let's talk just a second about your younger brother Marshall. Do you think that Duke may recruit him?
Well, I don't know, it'll be interesting. Of course, as his brother I hope they do. I hope he improves his game enough to where they will recruit him. He's got a long way to go, just like I do before I get to Duke next year. I hope that we can all stay together like we did here at Christ School and hope Marshall keeps improving. He's working really hard. If he just grows into his body I think he'll be pretty good.
Do you know where Marshall will play his AAU ball for this summer?
Yeah, he's going to play for Indiana Elite. He'll go to the Carolina Challenge. I know AAU will be different this year because they have an open period in the Spring. I think the tournaments are more regional up until July.
How long do you have left in high school?
We have until May which will not be that long.
You guys take a pretty good academic load and study a lot ...
We have study hall every week night from Sunday to Thursday which lasts from 7:30 to 9:15.
Good deal, that'll help prepare you for college. When you finish school will you go to Indiana to be with your parents ... Durham ... where will you be hanging out?
I will go home for the first month or so to be home with my family and work out there. I will go to Duke for the second session of summer school which I think starts July 1st.
Thanks for your time and good luck with the All Star games. Enjoy yourself, stay healthy and be a kid.
I will. Thanks Mr. Watson.
Thank You. [/private]