Freshman Friday: Karl Towns, Jr.
The 6-10 Towns with an outside game will be talked about in cities and states
Welcome back to Freshman Friday, your periodic, but in-depth look at some of the country's finest first-year players.
This past spring and summer, we featured:
- JaQuel Richmond (CP3 All-Stars/Wesleyan Christian Academy, N.C.)
- Tyus Jones (Howard Pully Panthers/Apple Valley H.S., MN)
- Jahlil Okafor (Mac Irvin Fire/Whitney Young H.S., IL)
- Justin Jackson (Houston Hoops/Homeschool Christian Youth, TX)
- Andrew Wiggins (CIA Bounce/Huntington, Prep, W.V.)
- Wayne Selden (BABC/Tilton School, N.H.)
- Theo Pinson (CP3 All-Stars/Wesleyan Christian Academy, N.C.)
Now we're kicking off the 2011-12 school year with St. Joe's of Metuchen's (N.J.) 6-10 do-it-all big man, Karl Towns, Jr..
Playing for the alma mater of former McDonald's All-American, NCAA Champion, National College Player of the Year and No. 2 NBA Draft pick, Jay Williams, Towns has big shoes to fill.
It's a good thing he wears a size-20. That's not a typo. Towns, who suits up for Eddie Bright Jr. and Coach Eric Harrield's top-ranked Sports U/Team IZOD program in the summer, has the type of game that will leave large footprints anywhere he goes.
Take the jump below to learn more about this dynamic young man.
Five-Star: How's school going so far? What was the ultimate factor in deciding to attend St. Joe's?
Towns: It’s right for me. I fit in very well. I wanted to go to school that would provide a good education and strong foundation for basketball and when I looked at the success they've had, St. Joe's of Metuchen fit that bill.
Five-Star: You know Five-Star alumnus and former NCAA National Player of the Year, Jay Williams, went there. What have you heard about him?
Towns: He's the best player ever to come out of St. Joe's. He won a lot of accolades. I just hope that I can have a high school career as good as he did. Follow his example of hard work.
Five-Star: You're 6-10, but the videos show that you like to hoist it from outside. What position will you play at this level?
Towns: I asked my new high school coach, Dave Turco, that early on. He explained to me that I will play the 2-4 positions. A big man acting as a guard. He wants me to use the three-pointer and play in the post. Open up some players like Quenton DeCosey. Lighten the load for him to go the basket.
He said you're not going to see many 6-10, 6-11 guys guarding you at this level, so you have take advantage of each situation.
Five-Star: Have you ever played with or against Quenton [DeCosey] outside of school? What's your impression on him? The great coaching staff at St. Joe's?
Towns: I've never played against him, but he's good. I've seen him play. I'm very impressed with the coaching staff and players. Talented. Well-founded. Very structured.
Five-Star: Share with us some of your goals for the season. Personal goals and team goals.
Towns: Personally, I just want to make sure we get the wins. If I had a goal for myself, it would be to give my teammates blocks, rebounds and tough defense every time I step on the floor.
As a team, I want to win two or more state championships. Go undefeated. It's going to very a very tough goal, but I will work hard on it.
Five-Star: How did your experience with Sports U/Team IZOD help prepare you for this transition to high school?
Towns: They gave me a foundation for basketball. Sports U helped me through the summer, helped my game evolve. The program continues to make me a better player and a better person at the same time.
It's important for me to be an intellectual and an athlete. You need to have both sides. Sports U makes sure you'll be ready on the court and in the classroom. SAT prep, tutoring, any help you need. That always comes first. A high GPA and high standards.
I'm also grateful that we're associated with a dynamic company like Under Armour, and what they stand for. It's about getting better.
Five-Star: And what about your pops, Karl Sr., who played at Monmouth. How has he helped mold you into a fine student-athlete?
Towns: My dad has always been there. He works me out, preparing me for high school and college. He always says "You need to work one level harder than where you're at. Workouts need to be intense."
He motivates me to be a better person than I already am.
Five-Star: Which NBA players, past or present do you try to pattern your game after?
Towns: There's two. I pattern my outside, perimeter game after Kevin Durant. I model my dribble and three-pointer after him. I also love the way he is as a person. He loves the game.
My second favorite player is Len Bias. He was a blend of a big guy and guard. Real smooth. I've seen him a lot on YouTube.
Five-Star: Interesting duo. Past and present. Is there a particular quote, lyric, book or movie that inspires you most?
Towns: Yeah, there's one from Willie Mays. "It isn't hard to be good from time to time in sports. What is tough, is being good every day." I have it written on my bedroom wall.
Five-Star: What career paths or subjects interest you outside of basketball?
Towns: Sports broadcasting or majoring in anatomy and medical science. Being a doctor. I just feel like if I can help people, that would be good. That’s what I want to do.
Five-Star: All great choices and aspirations. Last question... What's on the agenda for the rest of fall?
Towns: I will continue to work on my game and attend college showcases. I'm trying to get that college scholarship that’s very hard to find, and knowing exactly what options and paths I can take.