Aug. 7, 2007
Jason Rich is an All-ACC candidate as a four-year returning starter and the Seminoles’ leading returning scorer entering the 2007-08 season. The many abilities he has displayed during the first three years of his career on both the offensive and defensive ends of the court place him in the special class as one of the most talented all-around players in the nation’s best conference for the upcoming season. Rich sat down for an exclusive interview with seminoles.com to talk about what he has been working on this summer and how he is going to become the best player he can be as a senior.
What have you been doing this summer?
“This summer I have worked very hard to improve all facets of my game. I am working hard to become a more of a well-rounded player and a better teammate. I realize that I am going into my senior season and that makes me want to work even harder than I have during the first three years of my career. I feel that we have a lot to prove this season and that we all have to play well for our team to be successful and to reach our goals at the end of the season. I am going to continue to do everything I possibly can to help our team and my teammates reach the goals we set for ourselves at the beginning of each season.”
What have you been working on to make yourself a more complete basketball player for the Seminoles
during the upcoming season?
“Throughout the off-season, I have structured my workouts so that I can work on a number of different aspects of my game. I have really worked on my ball handling and my jumpshot. I want to be able to make moves past defenders in order to get closer to the basket so I can make batter basketball plays and take better shots. I want to enter the season knowing that I have worked on my shot so that it is more consistent in order to raise my shooting percentage. I also want to get to the free throw line on a more consistent basis. I want to make myself a more complete player. I am also watching a lot of tape from the first three years of my career to find ways to get better and become a more complete player.
Describe a day in the life of Jason Rich this summer
“This has been a really great summer for me for many reasons. I generally get up at about 7:30 and begin preparing to go to class. I attend class until about 10:45 and then head over to the basketball facility to train in the weight room with Coach Bradley. I then hit the court for individual workouts at 4:30 and we bring pick-up as a team at 5:30. It’s a full day and I have really tried to be consistent with my schedule throughout the entire summer.”
What is one thing that is standing out about the team this summer?
“The one thing that really stands out about this team during the summer is that there seems to be more chemistry between all of our players than there has been in the past couple of years. There is a sense of cohesiveness; we understand that for us to be successful as a team we have to do things as a team. There is no one person who is going to be able do everything like we have had in recent years. This is going to have to be a team effort for us to be successful. I really see a sense of chemistry and a sense of camaraderie between all of our players. I see that chemistry on this team more than I have seen on any other team I have been on since I have been at Florida State.”
Describe your relationship with seniors Ralph Mims and Isaiah Swann?
“My relationships with Ralph Mims and Isaiah Swann began well and have only continued to grow throughout our careers. It’s like we are brothers. We came to Florida State together and we have common goals. We all want Florida State to be successful and we are all working as hard as we can to help our team and our teammates reach our goals. We want to continue building a foundation for this program. Our focus right now is continuing to better as a team and to take this team to the NCAA Tournament. I think that we will respond to the challenges of our senior season and we will help our team reach our goals.”
What do you three players – Mims, Swann and Rich — want to accomplish as a group this season?
“There are many things that we want to accomplish during our senior seasons. Our main goal is to take Florida State to the NCAA Tournament. It’s going to take a lot more than the three of us but we want to be big contributors to the success of the team this season. We all want to have great senior seasons – one that we can look back on and know that we helped Florida State get back to where it belongs – in the NCAA Tournament.”
What do you have to do as a group to accomplish those goals?
“In order for us to reach our goals we have to get better as a group – and a team — each and every day. Our main goal is not to just get into the NCAA Tournament but to make some noise when we do get there. Playing well in the tournament is something we have all thought about during our basketball careers. The closer you get to achieving that dream – the more you want to live that dream. The more you begin to get a taste – the more you want it. The news guys feel the same way we all feel and we are excited about getting started this year.”
What have you learned from your first three seasons as a Seminole?
“During my first three seasons as a Seminole I have learned that every little detail and performing every task matters if you want to achieve a bigger goal. One possession can and does make a difference in every game. That one possession that you may have taken off may mean the difference in winning or losing. I think that as we enter the upcoming season I need to push myself even harder on a day-by-day and a play-by-play basis. I have to – we all have to – give everything we have to this basketball team and focus our minds on playing and winning basketball games. I couldn’t have gotten to this place in my career without my first three seasons at Florida State as I have grown to understand how the game needs to be played in order for us to win.”
How are you working to make the freshman feel comfortable and quickly become vital components of this team for the upcoming season?
“As a team we are working hard to make sure the freshmen feel that they are a major part of this team for the upcoming season. We want them to know that we need them and are glad that they are a part of our – and what is now – their team. The freshman are a group who are very excited to be at Florida State and are individuals who are going to be receptive to the instruction our coaches are going to give to them. We are working to help them get ahead of the game. They are all going to be contributors to the success that we are going to achieve this season.”