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The Zags newest deep threat: A few good questions with Keegan Hyland

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Keegan Hyland's work ethic and phenomenal outside shot caught the eye of Ray Giacoletti.
Keegan Hyland's work ethic and phenomenal outside shot caught the eye of Ray Giacoletti.

If you are into relaxed offseasons where the only news is how players are progressing and how much Mark Few is fishing, this summer may have been a bit too much to handle.  The Zags had departures, arrivals and everything in between.  Mark Few and the staff traveled far and wide to lock up the 2010 class, all of which was assembled in the offseason.  We've become accustomed to foreign recruits, whether it be Europe or Canada but one that had to surprise even the most die hard recruiting fanatic was that the Zags were in hot pursuit of a kid from Maine.  He turned out to be Keegan Hyland.  Hyland's recruitment had it's ups and downs but the sharpshooter from the Northeast stayed the course and saw his hard work pay huge dividends when the Zags came calling.

Keegan was kind enough to take the time to answer a few of our questions as he prepares for his first collegiate season at Gonzaga.  We hope you enjoy:

The Slipper Still Fits:  It seems like your recruitment to Gonzaga happened very quickly. Can you talk about the process from when you started to hear from Gonzaga, to ultimately choosing to commit to Gonzaga over attending prep school. What other schools were you hearing from before making your commitment?

Keegan Hyland:  I picked Gonzaga over Prep school because it was too good of an opportunity to pass up. The chance to play at a storied program does not come about too often. I also think the system is a great fit for me. I had a few Big East schools, many A 10 schools, and various others.

continue reading more from our interview with Keegan after the jump...

TSSF:  One of the interesting aspects of your recruitment is that at one point you were originally committed to Vermont. What caused you to open up your recruitment and explore other options besides Vermont?

KH:  I decided to open up my recruitment because I have always believed that I can play at the highest level. Although Vermont is a great program, it wasn't the high level I was looking for.

TSSF:  You come to Gonzaga with the reputation of being a lights-out shooter. How would you best describe your game, and what type of offensive system do you feel most comfortable playing in?

KH:  I would describe my game as being an outside shooter, but if forced to, can score in different ways. I am at my best coming off screens and can get the ball to the open man if the shot is not there. I believe I play the game smart and I am a hard worker whenever I am on the court. I believe the system at Gonzaga is the best fit for me because of all the sets we run to get open looks.

 

TSSF:  Being from Maine, not many people on the West Coast are familiar with the quality of high school basketball in the state. How difficult has the transition from high school basketball to playing for a Top-15 team been? What are some of the biggest differences you have noticed?

KH:  It will be quite a transition but one I can handle. The biggest difference is the size, strength and speed. I am working hard every day to adjust.

TSSF:  How has your recovery from the injury during your senior season gone? What exactly was your injury, and is it the type of thing that can bother you down the road?

KH:  I had a stress fracture in my pubic ramus bone. The recovery has gone well and I have been back to playing all spring and summer. The doctor does not believe it will affect me in any way in the future.

TSSF:  With the departure of Bol Kong from the program, Gonzaga obviously needs a guy who can open the paint by hitting shots from the perimeter. Is that the type of role you are expecting to fill this season, or are you considering the possibility of redshirting?

KH:  I know that I was brought in to knock down shots and I am very confident that I can do that and help the team in that way. I will fill whatever role the team needs and will be a high energy guy.

TSSF:  After being able to spend the summer with the majority of the team, what are your expectations this season for the team?

KH:  I think we are going to be very successful this season. We have a lot of guys back, and people who can do a variety of things. I expect us to accomplish big things this season.