D'Shawn Schwartz is quite good at basketball.
So much so that he has become a big-time target for CU basketball coach Tad Boyle among other schools in the Pac-12.
So with his senior season looming, it was time to figure out where Schwartz is in his decision making process. And since we had him, we wanted to get the scoop on his experience with USA Basketball, what he does in his down time and his thoughts on the athletic culture at Sand Creek.
Question: You recently spent time at the USA Basketball U17 tryouts, what was that experience like for you?
Schwartz: I really liked the experience. Just going up there was a blessing and a great opportunity being the only one there from Colorado. I thought it was just really cool to mesh with new guys and play with some great players.
Q: Was it a different style or level of play than what you're used to when you're playing club ball or playing with Sand Creek?
Schwartz: I think basketball is pretty universal. It's nothing much more than I've already seen and to me, the club ball adjustment definitely helped transition for USA. And definitely training as hard as I was.
Q: Is it something that factors into what you're going to be going through in the next couple of months with your college decision looming and your senior season starting up?
Schwartz: I don't really know. I'm just trying to look at what's going to fit me. I don't really look too much at other people and what they're doing.
Q: But speaking of other people, Hunter Maldonado just announced that he was going to head up to Wyoming. It's a guy you know and have played against. What are your thoughts on his commitment and and did it get you thinking that it's getting to a point where you have to make a decision?
Schwartz: I was definitely happy for him. I'm happy he got something. A lot of kids get overlooked out here so I'm really happy for him. But as far as affecting my decision, it didn't really do much for me. I'm really just trying to see what's the best I can get in July.
Q: I'd probably get fired if I didn't ask right now, but have you narrowed your choices down to a top five or top three considering the offers you have?
Schwartz: I'm expecting to get a couple more, hopefully in July; a couple more Pac-12 schools. Then hopefully I'll take my visits. But I know for sure I'm going on a visit to CU and Stanford.
Q: When are you hoping to make a decision?
Schwartz: I just want to do it before the (high school) season.
Q: Going into your senior season, you have a new coach and it's going to be a different atmosphere. Do you have any goals for what you want to do with Sand Creek next year?
Schwartz: There's a lot. Obviously (I want to win) a state championship, Gatorade Player of the Year, everything I can get out of this year. I want to go out with everything I can and leave Sand Creek proud and leave a legacy.
Q: With you being considered one of the top players in the state, does that add a lot of pressure on you or are you able to still have a lot of fun with your high school season?
Schwartz: I think it adds a lot (of things). It puts a target on my back for sure, but I don't think I have any pressure. I deal with pressure pretty well now that I've gotten into music and stuff and I have good people around me to help fill with down time.
Q: What do you do in your down time?
Schwartz: I just make music. I have a lot of ideas and I just put them out there.
Q: Is that something you want to do when you go to college, regardless of where you go?
Schwartz: Yeah. I'm probably going to try and major in business and minor in music.
Q: What kind of music are you centered on?
Schwartz: It's just off the computer, I don't play a real instrument.
Q: You're more mixing stuff together then?
Schwartz: Yes and no, I just make beats and stuff.
Q: Do you every do anything with it that you try and tie back into basketball? Do you make warmup tracks or stuff you want to play in the gym during a game?
Schwartz: I have thought about that. They've asked me, but we'll see how that goes. I don't know yet.
Q: Over the last couple of years, I've noticed the Sand Creek athletic department is really trying to boost its level of competition and it's overall image. Is that something you guys feel as much as I'm trying to see it from an outside perspective?
Schwartz: Yeah. Mr. Felice, our athletic director, I think he's wiped out every coaching staff when he came in. He's just really trying to change the culture for every sport. He's really trying to make some moves.
Q: Does that excite you for what can happen at the school if the trend continues?
Schwartz: No doubt. I'm definitely going to be coming back as much as I can. I know a lot of young kids that will be coming to Sand Creek, so (it's nice) to see them actually want to come instead of going to (other schools).
Q: What's going to be different about your game with Coach Hawkins being there?
Schwartz: Oh man. He's going to put a killer instinct in me. He's got that attitude and he's really going to drill it in me.
Q: In what way? What is he going to have you do this year that you didn't do a lot of next year?
Schwartz: First off, we don't have Jordan (Phillips) anymore. I'm sure I'll have to take on more of a load and I think he's going to make sure I'm taking what I deserve and not being so passive when I should be shooting. He really wants me to be great.
Q: In order to do that, what do you have to do for the rest of the summer in order to be that great player for Sand Creek as well as Colorado high school basketball?
Schwartz: Just keep competing and try to stay healthy. As of now, I just started a diet and I'm trying to lose a couple of pounds so I can try to get faster and more explosive. Just doing the little things to help my game.