Finally back in the Salt City after a highly eventful and productive summer, Syracuse senior point guard Scoop Jardine addressed the media to reflect on how he’s been spending his offseason. Scoop recently traveled to China to participate in the World University Games for Team USA. The United States finished in fifth place at the tournament, though it was only handed one loss.
Scoop has represented his country in national tourneys for several straight seasons, but felt that this endeavor meant more because he’s older and had a greater appreciation for the experience.
“I know more. I know really what it means to play for USA now. When you’re young you really don’t know how much it means.”
Another unique benefit of this particular trip was the opportunity for Scoop to bond with Orange teammate Fab Melo, who played for Brazil. Scoop said that he spent as much time as he could with his Brazilian pal, helping him develop his game for the upcoming season.
“Every time he had a game I was there for him. Just giving him little pointers that I saw, just watching the games for myself that could help him [for Team Brazil] and could help him here with [Syracuse].”
But when asked if he spoke to Fab about the sophomore center’s legal situation, Scoop quickly shrugged the topic off.
“Nope, we don’t do that. It’s about basketball.”
And the Philly point guard got the chance to play a lot of basketball this summer in various settings. He says his time at the Lebron James and Chris Paul camps differed dramatically from his time with Team USA.
“At all the camps I was at it was more individual: Showcasing your talent, showcasing what you can do for scouts and coaches that were there. USA was more of a team thing. Everybody put their egos at the door to win a gold medal, forgetting about the points, forgetting about the minutes they played.”
Although Team USA came up short, at least the trip to China wasn’t cloaked in embarassment. Georgetown can’t say the same thing, after a Hoyas exhibition game against a Chinese team ended in a brawl. Scoop said he actually sympathized with John Thompson III’s squad.
“I felt for Georgetown. We’re rivals, but you never want to see nothing like that. I was just happy they continued to finish out the tournament.”
That doesn’t mean Scoop wouldn’t like to pulverize the Hoyas this season, which he’s certainly looking forward to. His agenda between now and opening night:
“Stay in shape, continue to work. Everything I worked for this summer is for now. Be ready for now, and be the leader that I am for this team to be successful.”
Physically, Scoop says he’s in top shape. Although the slightly pudgy ‘Cuse point guard has apparently slimmed down with an unconventional diet. Or something like that.
“I lost 10 pounds… eating McDonald’s.”
Say what you want, but Scoop never ceases to amuse.
Posted: Andrew Kanell