For the next installment of the Pro Insight Q&A series, presented by Babcock Hoops, we have Arizona State commit Marcus Bagley, from Tempe, Arizona:
Prospective Insight: Describe your game – what are your greatest strengths and biggest areas for improvement? What’s the most underrated aspect of your game?
Marcus Bagley: I’m just a guy that’s willing to do anything to win — big thing for me is versatility, being able to play different spots, be everywhere on the court. One weakness that I need to work on is my ball handling — it’s everything really, there’s always something you can work on to get better. Strengths, I feel like I can shoot it, attack and get to the line. It’s about always trying to get better everyday. Underrated, probably my ability to play every position and shoot the ball. I feel like I can really score the ball, and not many people know that, so that’s underrated right now.
PI: Let’s talk some about Team Bagley. You come from a tight knit family – what does family mean to you?
MB: It’s always been like that since we were kids — me and Marvin always stuck together. My parents come to every game, and when Martay was born, the first place he went to was one of our games, so we travel as a pack and I love them to death.
PI: Tell us something people don’t really know about you.
MB: People don’t really know I’m big into fashion. I like to buy clothes, to design stuff, that’s probably one of the things I’d like to do after basketball, get into the designing field. Designing shoes, clothing, street wear, all of that stuff.
PI: Tell us something no one else knows about Marvin.
MB: It’s not a story, but in the backyard we used to get into full-fledged fighting, throwing punches and stuff — that’s what kind of made us both tough. My dad usually had to jump in and break it up. Marvin used to be way bigger than me, so as a little guy I always had to do that to beat him. My dad would jump in before anybody would win, but we’d both get in trouble.
PI: What sort of things have you learned from Marvin over the years?
MB: It’s something Marvin took from Coach K at Duke — he’d always say “next play...next play mentality” and that’s when it’s good or bad. You have a great game, you’ve got to put it in the past; you have a bad game, you got to come back the next time and do whatever you can to win the game. So you know, just having a short memory.
PI: How has the move to Sacramento been — what’s that adjustment been like?
MB: It’s been cool, there are good people at Sheldon: the coaches are cool, I feel like I landed in the perfect spot...they let me make my mistakes, so them and my teammates have made the transition easy. So I’m just taking it day by day trying to get better.
PI: Talk about your greatest all-time memory on the court.
MB: Probably last year, winning Nor-Cal with my teammates. We had a lot of ups and downs last year, but that was satisfying to win that. To be able to do it with these guys, I wouldn’t have rather done it with anybody else, so that was fun.
PI: What are you most looking forward to playing at Arizona State?
MB: Winning, I want to win the PAC-12, I want to win the national championship. I like how coach lets his guys play...he’s big on just playing basketball and not getting too static, just keep running and I think I fit right into that game, that style of play. I’m excited, I’m ready to get there. I grew up around the corner from Wells Fargo Arena and I’ve always wanted to go there so that’s kind of cool.
PI: How do you feel like you fit into Coach Hurley’s system?
MB: He likes to run, he lets his guards play and make mistakes, so that’s big on me, development is big on me, you’ve got to make mistakes to develop, so I feel like as far as basketball wise, I can bring a lot and do a lot. I’m very versatile, I can play anywhere on the court and that’s exactly what he needs there so I’m ready to go.
PI: Is there any particular reason behind your choice of jersey number?
MB: I actually wore #24 because I’m a huge Kobe Bryant guy, so I wore #24 and when I went on the team they didn’t have #24 so the closest number they had was #23 so I grabbed it and it’s kind of stuck with me.
PI: You’ll be wearing your grandpa's old number at Arizona State, right?
MB: Yeah, he had the first jersey that was retired there so that’s going to be cool to be able to go back to Arizona and wear his number, that’s going to be cool.
PI: Do you model your game after anyone in particular?
MB: I really like Paul George. He’s 6’8” and can score the ball...he’s a two-way player, that’s something I’m trying to be. I also like Zach Lavine. I think he’s one of the more underrated guys in the league.
PI: Who would you say has influenced your life the most up to this point? Why?
MB: My dad, probably. He gives tough love...he’ll have me in the gym crying...he may have been hard, but it’s always for a reason and I’ve come to realize that now. Just my family overall, everything I do is for them and I try to make them proud, that’s all I try to do.
PI: Are there any players you’ve played against in high school or AAU that have been a difficult matchup for you? Any that stand out?
MB: Nobody comes to mind right now. I’ve played a lot of good players, I’m not sure.
PI: What’s your biggest passion outside the game of basketball? Do you do produce music as well? Any features with Marvin?
MB: I don’t really do much, I just like to sit at home and chill with the family. My brother does the music stuff, but I’ll go to the studio and I’m kind of like a little A&R, I’ve got my A&R gig. Nah I don’t get any features, I hopped in one time and it didn’t go too well, so I decided to stay in my lane. I like watching movies, basketball, just chilling with the family.
PI: What are your short and long term goals as a basketball player?
MB: I want to win a state championship — we got a long way to go, but this year I feel like we’ve got the team to do it. Long term goals, I want to be the best player I can be, I want to get better every day. To be able to inspire the youth and try to motivate them to do good things in their life.
PI: Ideally, where do you see yourself 10 years from now?
MB: In the NBA, probably...an All-Star, just doing big things in the league, making some noise. I want to win a lot, just getting better every day. Just the same thing I’m doing right now, but at the pro level.
PI: Name four words that best describe you.
MB: Versatile, hard-working, winner, scorer.
PI: At the end of the day what do you want to be remembered for?
MB: As a player, I want to be remembered as a winner — winning as much as possible, being a hard-worker, being a great teammate. I just want to go down as one of the greats. As a person, I just want to be remembered as a guy that the kids can look to as a positive influence on them...a guy with great energy, that’s always positive.