Q&A with Darius Joseph, men's basketball
Courtesy: Sara Folkestad, UND Athletic Media Relations
Release: 02/17/2009
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by Sara Folkestad, UND Athletic Media Relations

The cliché says you can’t go home again. However, men’s basketball player Darius Joseph, a senior guard averaging 9.1 points and 4.1 assists per game this season, got to do just that when he recently went home to Washington State to play a game against Seattle University, as Joseph hails from nearby Tacoma. The trip, like the basketball season, had its ups and downs, as Joseph scored a career-high 19 points in the game, but the team fell to Seattle 83-60.

Joseph talked with about going home to play and the rematch in Grand Forks against Seattle, his path to UND, and his perspective on the season thus far.

The Sioux are back in action at home on Thursday, Feb. 18 at 8 p.m. against Southern Illinois-Edwardsville at the Betty Engelstad Sioux Center, following the women's game.

Q: How long have you played basketball?

A: I was about 12 years old when I started playing ball.                             

Q: You played on the post in high school. When did you make the switch to guard?

A: I played varsity all 4 years of high school, but my freshman and sophomore year I played in the post, my junior year I went down to play the wing, and as a senior I was the point guard.

Q: Talk a little bit about how the season has gone so far. What have been some of the high and low points?

A: I think we’ve had a lot of high points. Our first game of the season we beat an established Division I team, Missouri-Kansas City. We also had a three-game winning streak this season. And we went down to Texas A&M and were able to play them close. Those were some high points to the season. Some low points to the season were this past weekend we had a disappointing game in Seattle, losing by so much to them.

Q: You recently got to go home to play against Seattle University in Seattle. What was it like going home to play a game?

A: It was fun. A lot of people I knew were there. I’d say there were 25-30 people there supporting me. And most of them hadn’t seen me play in a while, so that was fun. It was just kind of disappointing how we lost by so much.

Q: You play Seattle again here in Grand Forks at the end of the month. What adjustments will need to be made for the rematch?

A: Yeah, we will play them possibly two more times. ... Basically we need to play better defense and not turn the ball over. Better defense wins games and we need to limit turnovers and have better rebounding. I need to control the ball better to prevent the turnovers. We had a lot of turnovers against Seattle, so if we limit those we can have a better result.

Q:  What have been some of the individual and team challenges you’ve faced this season?

A: Individually, a challenge has been trying to do better with turnovers than I had been. The size of our team has also been a challenge because a lot of the Division I teams we’ve faced have been a lot bigger than we are.

Q: What has been the most memorable game you have played in either at UND or prior to coming here?

A: A memorable game I played in was when I played AAU basketball. We played the Atlanta Celtics, which had a lot of current NBA players. So a lot of those players are now playing in the NBA, which is cool.

Q: How did you end up at UND? What made you decide to play basketball here?

A: When UND recruited me I was playing junior college, and at the time they were Division II. I didn’t qualify for Division I at the time, but they had said by my senior year I could be Division I. I liked the coaches and the facilities ... and they were all very welcoming to me.

Q: What are your future plans?

A: Well, I would like to continue to play ball overseas, maybe in Australia or something. Emmanuel Little, who was on our team last year, is doing that and I would like to get on where he’s at, and use my connections to keep playing.

Q:  Who was your favorite basketball player growing up?

A: Kevin Garnett was my favorite player growing up, because then I was playing in the post, and he was a post. But also, when I became a guard I also liked Jason Kidd.

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