Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Curry, Wildcats happy together

I get asked two questions all the time about Stephen Curry.
1. Just how good is he? (He’d start for almost every team in the country.)
2. Will he ever transfer from Davidson?
That second one is considered taboo around some folks at the school. The school’s message board ( won’t even discuss the idea, because the thought of losing the nation’s second-leading freshman scorer makes members shudder.
So, Stephen, what has your first year at the school been like?
"It has been better than I expected," he said.
Teammate Thomas Sander gave him a puzzled look after that statement. The school’s fans would be stunned. Was he unhappy?
Curry quickly restated his thoughts.
"No wait, wait, that’s not what I meant," he said. "Things were just up in the air when I got here. No one knew how good we would be."
No one knew how good Curry would be, either. He’s surprised even his father, Dell, who expected his son to slow down late in his freshman season. But the younger Curry has averaged 25 points in his past 10 games and was voted Southern Conference Freshman of the Year by league coaches Wednesday. And, Dad is happy with how things have worked out at Davidson.
"You can really see him progress ever since the summer. He really likes the school and his teammates," Dell Curry said.
Stephen Curry also has a lot of freedom in the Davidson offense. The Wildcats average 82 points, seventh in the nation, and Curry has the green light to shoot when he wants.
"If you look at the history since I have been here, there haven’t been a lot of guys who score points in such bushels like Stephen has," coach Bob McKillop said. "He is really capitalizing on a system that is built for him to get opportunities."
McKillop added another important factor in that – Curry has the respect of his teammates, who don’t mind deferring to him.
"We have so much chemistry on this team," Sander said. "It’s like we are just playing in the back yard with our friends."
Curry gets along with his teammates, and he’ll have all of them back next season. All 11 scholarship players return, making Davidson a strong contender for an NCAA berth again. He’d have to sit out a year if he transferred, and he’s already getting national attention at Davidson.
So let’s ask him again. Is he happy there? Curry answered without hesitation.
"Of course."
-- Kevin Cary