Prep Spotlight: Tyler Maye
By JORDAN ANDERS
The Daily Reflector
Thursday, January 5, 2017
Farmville Central senior point guard Tyler Maye is the Jaguars’ lone starter that was a key contributor on last year’s 2-A state championship team. Maye has scored 30-plus points six times this season, and he chatted with Reflector prep sports beat writer Jordan Anders this week to discuss this year’s team as well as his college recruitment.
Q: Before we get to this season, tell me when you started playing basketball.
A: When I was about 4.
Q: Why did you start playing?
A: My dad used to play. We used to go to the Boys & Girls Club in Farmville and I used to watch him play against other guys.
Q: You are the Jags’ only starter who also started on last year’s team. What was the adjustment like to having a new band of guys around you?
A: It hasn’t been that different, because some of the guys from this year’s team were on the team last year, so we’ve played with each other. We’ve been playing with each other since we were little, so it hasn’t been that different.
Q: You kind of came out of nowhere last year with the numbers you put up here. Can you tell a difference in the way teams are defending you this season now that they know you?
A: I can tell it. I’ve been seeing all different kinds of defenses, from Box-and-1 to double teams to everything.
Q: What have you had to do to try to overcome that during games?
A: Just prepare myself mentally, because it can get frustrating at times when you’ve got a guy guarding you from one end to the other.
Q: This program didn’t lose a game last season, but is 6-5 so far this year. What has been the most challenging part about the start of this season?
A: Just us being a young team, because we’ve got a lot of young guys on our team that are ready to step up. Just having that next-man mentality.
Q: Your coach, Larry Williford, said this week that he felt like struggling somewhat in the early stages of the year has helped this team as you prepare for conference play. Do you agree?
A: I do. (It helped by) just saying we can be beat. Last year, we didn’t get beat, so I guess we just go out there with a chip on our shoulder every night to play hard and not take it for granted.
Q: You’ve been on a tremendous scoring tear, with three 40-point games already this season. What has been working so well for you?
A: My shot and just playmaking ability. I’m just trying to get everybody involved and be a better all-around point guard, coming off screens, looking for my teammates, getting rebounds or whatever I can do to help us win.
Q: You’ve earned a lot of attention from college coaches and a number of Division I offers. What has that recruitment process been like for you?
A: It’s been fun having different coaches come in here each and every week talking to you and telling you how good you’ve been and how they want you in their program. It’s just a blessing.
Q: What schools have offered you so far?
A: Charlotte, Kennesaw State, Coastal Carolina, Western Carolina, High Point, New Hampshire and Winthrop.
Q: Is it difficult at all to put that process out of your mind when it’s time to focus on Farmville Central basketball?
A: Nah. I just go out there and just play.
Q: Do you have any idea when you plan to make a college choice?
A: Probably toward the end of the season. I’ve been trying to just focus on the season right now and just win with these guys.
Q: Are you leaning toward any particular school?
A: Nah. I’m still open.
Q: Are you more of a college basketball guy or NBA?
A: College. I like the atmosphere better than the NBA.
Q: Do you have a favorite team?
Q: What about a favorite player?
A: Malik Monk.
Q: I had a feeling you might say him. Why?
A: Just the way he goes out there and plays hard and makes shots. All the stuff he does, dunking and all that.
If you have a suggestion for a player to be featured in Prep Spotlight, contact Jordan Anders at firstname.lastname@example.org, 252-329-9594 or follow @ReflectorJordan on Twitter.