State's Marcus Foster brimming with confidence
It wasn't much different than the look Foster sported last season when he burst upon the stage with a sensational freshman season. The 6 foot 3 guard was second team All Big 12 with averages of 15.5 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.5 assists.
Foster's confidence is nike c size heightened, not to the level of over confidence or cockiness, but a visible self assurance that he deserves his spot on the preseason All Big 12 team. A high profile summer with invitations to the LeBron James Skills Academy and the Nike Guards Academy sharpened his game to where he wants to be more than K State's leading scorer as he prepares for his sophomore season.
"My summer went pretty well," Foster said. "I got to go to the point guard camp and the LeBron camp. I learned a lot and it improved my game a whole bunch, and I got to bring the stuff I learned back here and help my team. I can do more to help my team, like defending and passing at a higher level and not just score."
K State coach Bruce Weber knew he had a steal in Foster, who may have exceeded even the coaching staff's expectations. His message to Foster moving forward:
"It's been (the same) since last season: Stay humble and hungry and keep working at it," Weber said. "That's a key with anyone. The guys that want to be the special players, they have to make sure they put in that extra time so that they stay as a top player.
"I think he wants that, and now it's a whole different role than he had a year ago. He came in, and we thought he was pretty good, but he didn't have the high exposure of being a top 100 kid or being recruited, and now it's a different shoe on his foot. He's a marked man and he has to be ready to deal with that."
Foster's teammates have no doubt he will maintain his work ethic.
"He's always positive," senior forward Thomas Gipson said. "He's a great player, he's a leader and an overall good guy. I'm proud that he got picked preseason first team (Big 12) because he deserves it."
Foster's time at the Nike camp could prove vital, with indications he could see more duty at point guard. The Wildcats have sophomores Jevon Thomas and Nigel Johnson at point, but Foster could figure prominently into the equation.
"I'm definitely excited to play more point guard," he said. "I think it could help Nigel out a lot. You saw in the Big 12 Tournament that he can score the ball (17 points against Iowa State).
"I want to play point guard, but I am more comfortable nike 8095 off the ball. With the practice time we have four weeks before the season, I think I can get more comfortable playing point guard. Early on we might not show it much, but by Big 12 time I think I will be more comfortable with it."
K State has more size this season with the additions of Brandon nike shoes blue and white Bolden, Stephen Hurt and Malek Harris, but Weber can also go small with an enticing combination of Foster and Justin Edwards together in the backcourt.
"We definitely are like a tandem when we're on the court," Foster said of Edwards, who redshirted last season after transferring from Maine. "I know where he is and he knows where I'm at. We usually don't get to play together a lot (in practice) because they try to keep us apart, but when we do play with each other we try to find our spot, try to get in transition and throw alley oops.
"I enjoy playing with Justin. He's another scorer on the court and he's going to help me a lot and help (Gipson) and everybody."
The Wildcats, picked fourth in the Big 12 preseason poll, are excited by the options they have with more size and depth than a year ago when they posted a 20 13 record and lost to Kentucky in their opening game of the NCAA Tournament.
"There were times last year when we didn't have that competition because everybody was so banged up that we couldn't compete with each other as hard as we wanted to," Foster said. "This year we're deep we have six guards so we can compete more.
"We're tough. I feel if we can get that trait we had last year when we found our groove on defense and we were swarming everywhere, that can make our team go to a whole other level because we have the talent."