The Seawolves posted another stellar performance in their 2011-2012 season, with a substantial amount of help from sophomore guard Travis Thompson. Thompson was not scheduled to play at the beginning of the season due to an off-season knee surgery, however, there is no doubt that the change in plans showcased Thompson’s talents throughout the season.
TNL caught up with Thompson to get to know him off the court.
You were supposed to take this season off due to an off-season knee injury, what changed?
The reason why was (senior guard) Mario Gill, he was playing and I was like ‘oh, I will just redshirt and save the year for school.’ But then he got hurt, and he played the 2-position which I play also, and then there was no one to really fill that spot. So, the coaches asked ‘would you mind coming out of redshirt and playing’ and I was like ‘I don’t mind.’
What made you decide to come to UAA after high school at Diamond?
Staying in Anchorage and it was also the fact that for me, college has to do with school and it’s not really basketball first. It’s school first. I want to get my degree in civil engineering and UAA has a really good program.
What got you interested in engineering?
I just like math and so I was like ‘I don’t really know what to do, I don’t want to major in math.’ So I figured I’d just try engineering, and so far it’s worked out. We’ll see how it ends up.
Do you have any other hobbies besides basketball?
Hanging out with friends. I like going out to Nancy Lake with them and go tubing, wakeboarding and jet skiing.
Do you have any fun summer plans?
I’m going to work on the slope so no crazy plans. That should be interesting, though. It’s the summer hire program for BP.
How do you feel like the team did this season?
I thought we did great, especially with the things we had to overcome. Injuries was a major problem in our year. Just to overcome that showed how good our coaches were on recruiting good enough players and just how our players were able to play at any time. Our two main injuries were from our starters, Lonnie Ridgeway and Mario Gill and those were pretty big injuries. And then we just had small minor injuries that were nagging people and they just pushed through.
What is the team looking forward to improve on next season?
Improvement wise, we have a pretty good core coming back, like a good group of guys and we are all really close. We see each other so much so it is a good quality to have in teammates.
Is there anything planned to do as a team this summer?
I think everyone is just going to go home and just work, like basketball wise, and just be ready for next year.
What role do you see yourself playing on the team as far as personalities go?For me, I don’t really talk too much. I’m kind of the quiet guy. But if something is on my mind I will say it. I’m just here to work hard.