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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Fogg evolving as on-court leader

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    Kevin Brost
    Kevin Brost / Arizona Daily Wildcat

    On the surface, Kyle Fogg is the same player this season as he’s been the last three. He’s still a lockdown defender, he’ll still hit an open 3-pointer more often than not, and he’ll get to the basket when the opportunity’s there.

    He’ll take care of the ball and, while he won’t make the spectacularly athletic play, Fogg will be one of the Wildcats’ more consistent players throughout the season.

    But look a little deeper and you’ll see a guy who’s just a little more assertive and a little more vocal. That’s because Fogg has added one thing to his list of responsibilities this year — team leader.

    “I’m not trying to keep my mouth shut at all during workouts,” Fogg said. “Constantly talking, clapping my hands, stomping my feet. Anything I can do to get these guys a little more excited. I’m really ready to embrace this senior leadership role, not stop talking, trying to keep people involved.”

    The senior guard hoisted up 39,132 shots during the offseason. Fogg also added muscle to his thin frame. After ending last season at about 177 pounds, the native of Brea, Calif., said he wants to play this season at about 190 pounds.

    But Fogg hasn’t just changed physically. He’s never had a reputation from fans for being a fiery leader, rather someone who leads by example and always plays at maximum effort. But in practice, it’s a different story.

    “He’s definitely coming out of his shell,” said senior forward Jesse Perry. “A lot of guys might see him as quiet. But inside of the gym, it’s just us. Don’t nobody know what goes on. He knows this is his last year, and he wants to be good, you know, he wants to be a leader.

    “He wants to win,” Perry added. “That’s the most important thing.”
    Coming off of Arizona’s deepest run into the NCAA Tournament since reaching the Elite Eight in 2005, head coach Sean Miller said it’s easy to see why Fogg is so hungry for more success.

    “Any time you have the success that we had last year, especially in March, it’s a feeling that you want to return to,” Miller said.
    Fogg, now in his third season playing under Miller, is also getting more and more comfortable with the coach’s system. He made a big jump from his sophomore to junior seasons, and Miller said he expects more of the same as Fogg enters his final season at Arizona.

    “It’s been well documented that Kyle’s been a great leader and has worked very hard,” Miller said. “To me, (Fogg) is as prepared as any senior I’ve seen.”

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