Nike Hoop Summit Player Profile: Brad Beal
After helping the USA to a gold medal with a team-high 19.0 points per game in the 2009 FIBA Americas U18 Championship, 6’3” guard Brad Beal returned in 2010 and again led a USA squad, this time with 18.3 points per game to help the USA to gold in the inaugural FIBA U17 World Championship in Germany.
The MVP of the FIBA U17 World Championship, Beal will for a third time represent his country as a member of the USA Junior National Select Team that will face off against the World Select Team in the 2011 Nike Hoop Summit on April 9 at the Rose Garden in Portland, Ore.
And if you haven’t heard of Beal due to his two gold medals, maybe you watched him score 40 points to help Chaminade College Prep (St. Louis, Mo.) to a 76-58 win over McCluer North on Feb. 12 on ESPNU. Or maybe you’ve seen Chaminade ranked by USA Today as one of the top high school teams in the country, currently sitting at No. 16 nationally and No. 2 in the Midwest region.
One thing is for sure, you won’t want to miss Beal in the 2011 Nike Hoop Summit on April 9 at the Rose Garden in Portland, Ore. Get your tickets here, and don’t forget the game will be broadcast nationally by Fox Sports Net and its regional affiliates.
Are you looking forward to reconnecting with your USA teammates?
I am really looking forward to getting back together with those guys.
What do you expect to face from the World Team in the 2011 Nike Hoop Summit?
Probably the same thing I’ve seen over the past two summers with the USA teams – really just coming out being physical and just being really aggressive and never giving up, just playing hard and trying to represent their country. They are just trying to beat us.
What was the biggest challenge you encountered while playing international basketball?
The biggest challenge was overcoming adversity. When things weren’t going the way we wanted, when things got more physical, we had to fix our mentality. It becomes more mental than physical. That’s probably the biggest challenge.
What do you think of international rules?
I like the international rules a lot, actually, because it lets the players play a little bit. The shot clock prevents people from stalling, and it speeds up the game.
Is there an international rule you’d like to see the high school game adopt?
The shot clock. A lot of teams stall with the ball and like to play a slow-down offense. I’d rather have a much faster paced game where you can get up and down and score a lot of points and have an up-and-down style of game.
What made Florida a good fit for you?
Their style of play, really. Coach Donovan likes his guards and big men to run the floor a lot, press on defense as well, so I’m used to that type of caliber of defense and offense. It really just fits the way I love to play, so it’s just perfect for me.
What is your favorite training routine or drill?
One would be shooting the three and then running to touch the baseline at the other end of the floor, and then coming back and shooting again. It keeps me in shape, and when I get tired, it helps me focus more on hitting shots rather than thinking about being tired.
What is your least favorite training routine or drill?
I probably don’t have a least favorite. They are all tough, but you have to just fight through it and just do them.
Where is the most room for improvement in your game?
Probably my defense and my ball handling. I’m a two-guard but I’m not as tall as I would like to be, so I will probably be considered a point guard sooner or later, so I really have to work on my defense – being quicker and guarding guards who are probably smaller than me. And really working on my ball handling more.
Who do you most like to be compared to?
Ray Allen or Eric Gordon. They are both great shooters, but at the same time people don’t know that they can put it on the floor and go to the basket as well.
What helps you stay motivated?
Just knowing where I come from. I just can’t let the talent that God has blessed me with go to waste. I have to put it to use and try to give it my all when I’m on the court. Just play to represent myself and my family.
Where are you in your high school season?
My season is off to a great start. We are undefeated right now, 19-0, and everybody is playing together. The team chemistry is great, and I really think we have a great chance to win another state championship.
*Chaminade currently is 23-0, with district playoffs beginning Feb. 23.
How far have you come as a basketball player since your freshman year?
I’ve improved a great, vast amount. Coming in my freshman year, I was really nervous and timid a little bit. But then as the years progressed, I became smarter and got a better feel for the game. This year I’m really aggressive on both ends of the floor, way more than I have been throughout my whole high school career. A lot of people have told me that that was probably the biggest change in my game, is my aggressiveness.
What do you hope to accomplish in the Nike Hoop Summit?
Just to have fun and try to win the game. Whatever it takes to win, that’s what I’m willing to do.