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Walk-on just one of the guys early in season


Photo
Jacob Konst/Arizona Daily Wildcat
To the delight of his teammates, freshman walk-on David Bagga scores his first 3-pointer on Sunday during the Wildcats' 81-51 win over Virginia. Senior guard Chris Rodgers danced along on the sidelines.
By Roman Veytsman
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Wednesday, November 30, 2005
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In this edition of Dave's Diary, David Bagga, a freshman walk-on this season with the Arizona men's basketball team, talks about his first career points, the team's trip to Hawaii and planning homework around a road trip.

On his 3-pointer in Sunday's game against Virginia, his first career points in an Arizona uniform:

It felt great, there's really no way to describe it. I kind of came off a pick, and the guy didn't really guard me. The coaches have been telling me "If you're open, shoot it," so I shot it and I thought it might have a chance to go in, and it did.

On pumping up the student section in McKale Center before every game, something he did during warm-ups Sunday.

I'm going to start to, because I feel like if our crowd is into it ... it will be crazy for the other team.

On getting recognized around on campus and in Tucson:

People came up to me (after the Virginia game) and said "Good shot" and "Way to get in there and score." It's fun. It's great how this community supports every one of the players, even if you're not one of the main players. They still support you and they still root for you, so that's really great to see from my standpoint.

On being in Hawaii for last week's EA Sports Maui Invitational:

The first day we got there (Saturday), we took a bus to the actual gym where the games were being played, and then we practiced for about an hour and a half or two hours. Then we came back, we showered and relaxed, and then we had a barbecue to go to that night. The other teams came in there, and I was in a video game tournament, (playing) the EA Sports "NCAA Final Four" video game that just came out a few weeks ago. I played against Brandon Rush from Kansas. He (won). It was 27-21, but we only played four-minute halves. ...

It was really cool to see all the other teams and get to meet all the other players. Every team has respect for each other, but it was just great to see everyone showing good sportsmanship towards one another.

On (Sunday), we practiced again and put in what we had to. We were just getting prepared for Kansas, and that was our main goal for the day, to prepare for that team. Then we had a banquet to go to that night. Every coach was sitting up next to the host and said they were happy to be there. It was a great event. After the banquet, we had films on Kansas. We had a breakdown of what they were doing.

The next day we had a team breakfast in the dining room. We had some more film, then we had a shoot-around, came back to the hotel and that night we played Kansas.

Same thing on Tuesday and Wednesday, except it was more serious because Monday night we had films on UConn, but we didn't have that much time to prepare for each opponent. We had films Monday night on UConn, and then we had a shoot-around on Tuesday. After a pre-game meal, we went to get taped or do extra stretching and then we'd get on the bus and go to the game.

On missing class Nov. 21 through Nov. 23:

Basically, I told all my teachers I was traveling for the trip. I turned in all my assignments before I left, so I didn't have any homework to do when I came back. Our academic adviser came with us, so she helped everyone stay on top of their academics.

On having two days of practice off this week, yesterday and tomorrow:

First of all, any homework that's due in the upcoming days, I did it now, so that way I don't have to do it later this week, because I wanted to get ahead of everything. I did some extra lifting and some extra conditioning, and I'm probably going to go do some extra shooting later (tonight).

On Saturday's game at Houston:

We just have to come out and put two great halves together. Come out like we did in the second half against Virginia. Coach (Olson) has been saying, if we put two good halves like that (together), there's no one that can beat us, so it'll be great to see. I think we'll come out strong.



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