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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Williams mum on future


Derrick Williams can’t go a day without someone mentioning his draft stock on mock draft websites.

Even his teammates chime in on it.

“”I do it all the time,”” said guard Kyle Fogg.

Williams’ stellar season has created so much buzz around him that teammates Solomon Hill and Max Wiepking hurried to the UofA Bookstore to grab their teammate’s jersey.

“”Max and Solomon have been talking about it,”” said Williams. “”So today we stopped by the bookstore and they bought a blue and white one.””

The two teammates even requested a photo with the future pro with their new jerseys, which can be seen on his Facebook page.

“”I thought it was pretty cool,”” he added.

Williams’ teammates have embraced the attention he’s gotten over the last few months and enjoy having him around because he’s not your typical future first round pick.

“”It’s great to see just because he’s worked so hard, he’s came a long way since coming from La Mirada ‘till now,”” said Fogg. “”What makes it even better, as good as he is, he’s one of least cocky people you can meet.””

“”I’m kind of taking it upon myself to have a big head for him.””

Despite the attention Williams has garnered, he says he doesn’t pay attention to all the hype.

“”I don’t really care what people say,”” Williams said when asked if he tracks his draft stock. “”All I have to do is keep performing and all that other stuff will take care of itself.””

The sophomore’s focus may be a reflection of his inner circle.

“”That’s the beauty of Derrick, he really doesn’t have a lot of people in his ear,”” said head coach Sean Miller. “”He has a real small circle, he comes from a great family.””

Miller mentioned Williams’ mom, sister and a former coach as the people that influence him most.

“”They’re a team behind Derrick and that’s it,”” Miller added. “”He has a small circle with very little distractions.””

As some parents today try shopping their student-athletes around to colleges for money, Williams’ mother hasn’t changed, even with her son on the verge of a huge payday.

“”My mom hasn’t mentioned one thing to me about it, even last year,”” said Williams. “”She doesn’t talk about the NBA with me, I think that’s a good thing.””

Most would assume that Miller would be more focused on trying to keep the super sophomore for another year, but the head coach hopes to contribute to Williams’ NBA chances.

“”I know the best way we can help Derrick is for our team to have success,”” said Miller. “”If our team continues to have success, everyone points to who gets the credit.

“”If at the end of all of that if he can become, or any of our players, can become a first round pick or lottery pick then that’s great.””

Despite all the hoopla over Williams’ future, he still has the same approach that got him to this point.

“”I always tell myself to play like your underrated,”” he said. “”I always have something to prove to people.””


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