College Daze - Deng & Pops | Ep. 3 -

College Daze – Deng & Pops | Ep. 3

With the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, two British basketball stars, Luol Deng and Pops Mensah-Bonsu, set up a series of live discussions, hosted on Instagram Live which we are now reposting with permission on the Hoopsfix podcast feed.

In Episode 3, aired on April 6th 2020, they discussed their college experiences – Luol at Duke with Coach K and Pops Mensah-Bonsu at George Washington, with a lot of great stories about the recruitment and March Madness.

Hear from the duo on:

  • The rapid rise of Luol’s career from making the decision to take basketball seriously at 13, to consider jumping to the NBA straight out of High School 5 years later
  • How Luol was considering schools from his last 5 of Duke, Virginia, Indiana, Fairfield, and Missouri.
  • A workout Pops had with his brother, Kojo, after his Junior year where he saw all the holes in his game
  • Living in an era before the widespread proliferation of mobile phones
  • The impact Pops’ older brother Kojo had on guiding him through his career
  • The goals Pops set for himself and how he went about achieving them
  • When Pops first heard someone ask him if he’s coming back to school and realised the NBA is within reach
  • How the two had the same goals just very different paths to get there
  • The recruitment process and the amount of attention Luol was receiving
  • Luol being recruited by every school with private jets, except for Duke
  • How Luol and Charlie Villanueva were originally plotting to go to Indiana together and Luol only went to visit Duke because of his father
  • Pops last five schools were GW, La Salle, St Joes, Cleveland State and Boston College
  • How Luol ended up being the number 2 player in the country and all over Slam Magazine
  • Why Luol was determined to not just be a good junior player and having a one-track mind to make it
  • Pops having to balance getting a degree whilst preparing for a professional career
  • The advice Luol gave Pops when he was considering the NBA draft
  • Staying grounded whilst getting endless attention
  • Luol’s Final Four run in the NCAA Tournament in his Freshman year
  • How Luol was initially planning on returning to school for his Sophomore year, it getting back to the coaching staff, only to change his mind and have to tell them he was declaring for the NBA
  • A member of the GW coaching staff finding out Pops was close with Luol and trying to get him to persuade Lu to come to GW
  • The first time their parents saw them play basketball
  • Whether it’s harder to stay humble nowadays for young basketball prospects because of social media
  • Humbling experiences they both had in the NBA
  • And much, much, more!
Follow @LuolDeng9 and @PopsMBonsu on Instagram.

The show has been approved on iTunes – find it here and please subscribe to automatically receive new episodes straight to your phone/computer/tablet – if you could give us a review/rating it would be much appreciated to help the podcast spread far and wide, meanwhile it is also on Spotify hereOvercastStitcher, and Google Podcasts.

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