Interview with North Alabama’s Jamari Blackmon

Photo via roarlions.com

Jamari Blackmon is a star guard for North Alabama. Last season he averaged 12.4 points per game and shot 37% from 3. I think he’ll have a breakout year this upcoming season and be named to one of the A-Sun all-conference teams. I was able to talk to Jamari recently on various topics about himself and his career/team. Below is the full interview: 

Q: How has the Coronavirus affected your training this off-season? 

A: “It has been a pretty big set back. I still work out a ton, but it has made it harder to find an open gym and weight room, so I had to use outdoor courts. I’ve just been working out by myself, no team stuff yet.”

Q: What aspect of your game have you been working on improving the most this off-season? 

A: “Mainly shooting off the dribble and reading the pick and roll. I feel like that’s important in today’s game.”

Q: So I noticed you went from 29% from 3 freshman year to 37% last year, was that a big point of emphasis for you last off-season and what do you think went into that improvement? 

A: “Definitely was. I was highly disappointed with my efficiency, and I knew I was a better shooter than that. Improving my shot selection and also not mentally beating myself up after every miss was important.” 

Q: What’s your favorite game or memory from your college career so far? 

A: “Favorite game so far was playing against FGCU in a conference game last year. It was a pretty chippy game, and they had a great atmosphere. It felt good ruining their night. I had 22 & 4 that game.”

Q: What were the biggest adjustments for you going from the high school game to the college game? 

A: “I would say the biggest adjustment would be the pace of the game. Adjusting to length as well. In high school centers can be like 6’4 but in college every center is 6’9 and above. I had definitely had to adjust.”

Q: Are there any NBA players past or present that you model your game after or study to help you improve? 

A: “Definitely. One player I study a lot and try to emulate is Damian Lillard. His game is so smooth, and I like that he will give you a bucket and then lock up his position.”

Q: What has been the toughest environment you’ve played in during your college career so far? 

A: “Toughest environment was Pitt my freshman year. It was extremely loud and their student section was crazy. Next would be Liberty my freshman year. They had clowns in their student section and they were right next to our bench just talking to us.”

Q: What’s it like playing for Coach Pujol? 

A: “I love playing for Coach P, and the whole staff honestly. But he allows me to grow, while also being honest with me. He doesn’t sugar coat things, which I like in a coach. Also he is so passionate about the game. He’s sweating in the end just like us.”

Q: What are some individual and team goals that you have for next season? 

A: “Individually I just want to increase numbers in all aspects and keep improving my efficiency. Biggest individual goal is to win the A-Sun POY. Team wise the goal is to win the A-Sun championship, then the NIT. We still have two years probation left from moving to D1. So we want to win at the biggest stage we can.” 

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