Jon Teitel continues our season preview series by chatting with Texas A&M-Corpus Christi PG John Jordan about how he celebrated his 21st birthday earlier this month.
You play for Coach Willis Wilson: what makes him such a good coach, and what is the most important thing that you ever learned from him? Coach Wilson is very fair and straightforward. The most important thing I have learned is to trust the process. When I came in I was outcome-driven, but Coach Wilson he has been able to get me to see things a different way as far as the process.
You lost your leading scorer from last year (Will Nelson). How much pressure do you feel to fill the offensive void left by his departure? Not a lot at all: I just want to be able to help my team in any way possible. If I have to score a lot of points, so be it; if I have to pass and set up my teammates, that is fine too. Whatever the team needs, I will be happy to help.
Your non-conference road schedule includes trips to Iowa State, Houston, Oklahoma, and Minnesota. Which of these four games do you feel will present your biggest test? They are all going to be tough but I think Minnesota will be the toughest. I saw them play in person at the NCAA tournament last year. They are disciplined and have nice size. They have a new coach but from what I have seen they were very well-coached.
What are your expectations for the upcoming season? I just expect us to reach our potential this year. Obviously I want to get to the conference tournament, win it, and be the best team in the Southland.
As a freshman you played in all 30 games and set a school record with 138 assists. How were you able to come in and contribute right from the start? I felt like I was just being humble: I wanted to come in, take in all the knowledge from the vets who were already here, and do my part.
What is the key to being a good PG? I think it is being able to take control of the game and have players respond to you the way you want them to. Being able to manage them on the floor is big too, seeing the floor well, and just making everybody better.
Last year you had back-to-back double-doubles against Southeastern Louisiana and Sam Houston State. How on earth are you able to get so many rebounds despite standing only 5’10”? It is just a mindset: like Coach Gross always talks about in practice, you have to be a “ball-getter”. Rebounding is just one of the things I have always really liked, and it allows me to hurry up and get the offense rolling by pushing the break.
You turned 21 last week: what did you do for the big day? I actually did nothing. It was on a Monday and I had class the next morning, so after practice I just went home and played video games.