Paul Friendshuh, a 6-foot-9, 210-pound junior from New Prague, is another top prospect from the loaded Class of 2014.
Paul Friendshuh, a 6-foot-9, 210-pound junior from New Prague, is another top prospect from the loaded Class of 2014 that includes Tyus Jones, Rashad Vaughn and Reid Travis. Friendshuh helped lead the Trojans to a 19-10 mark as they lost to Austin in the Section 1AAA championship game last season . He has led the Trojans to a 4-1 and is hearing from several Midwest schools, including the Gophers and attended their season opener this year and their regular season finale versus Nebraska last year. GopherHole.com recently caught up with Friendshuh to learn the latest on his recruitment.
Gopher Hole: How pleased are you with how well you are playing?
Paul Friendshuh: We had a tough loss last Tuesday. A game that we shouldn’t have lost, but it is, was it is. I am extremely pleased with how we played tonight. We shot well from the three-point line. It was a great win. Maple Grove (who they beat in the Breakdown Tip-Off Classic) is a great team. It is good to get a victory on the road.
Gopher Hole: Do you think that helps you playing a 4A team. You are obviously a 3A team. Maple Grove is a bigger school. Do you think that helps you?
Paul Friendshuh: I think that it definitely helps. I think that it is great to play against guys that are quicker, stronger, faster than you. I think that it will be a great experience for us.
Gopher Hole: What is the latest on your recruitment. How many offers are you up to right now?
Paul Friendshuh: Four. Davidson, Vermont, Green Bay and Northern Colorado (that list has grown to five as Holy Cross offered Sunday).
Gopher Hole: What other schools are you hearing from besides those?
Paul Friendshuh: Stanford. That is the biggest one. Wichita State. A lot of teams in the Missouri Valley are looking at me right now. I guess that is the conference that is really present.
Gopher Hole: You obviously have a lot to prove, but that has to make you feel pretty good, too?
Paul Friendshuh: Definitely. It makes you feel good and at the same time, it helps me keep cool. At the end of the day, after basketball, I can remember that this isn’t just it. Look forward to new things and keep working hard.
Gopher Hole: Have you had a chance to go to many college games this year?
Paul Friendshuh: I haven’t been to many, but obviously, we are recording lots. My dad travels a lot for his work. He has been able to get down colleges, talk to the coaches and take lots of pictures, interview them and stuff like that. Mainly, it is about going out there and seeing them as many as possible. .
Gopher Hole: Did you go to any college football games in the fall?
Paul Friendshuh: No. I don’t know why. We took a trip to Colorado and we also took a trip to see Lehigh and Bucknell. Those are great trips to see what that part of the country is like.
Gopher Hole: Did you go to one of the Gopher games this year?
Paul Friendshuh: We went to one of the Gopher games. They played American in the opener.
Gopher Hole: What was that experience like?
Paul Friendshuh: It was great. I know a lot of kids that attended the game and I know a couple of kids that are on the team, so it was a really fun experience. Obviously, it was the team opener and obviously, the Gophers are really good this year. They are great to watch. We are making sure to watch them. It was a great experience. I love the atmosphere there.
Gopher Hole: What are you hearing from the Gophers?
Paul Friendshuh: Not much, but they are still there. Mainly, just get stronger and stuff like that. Pretty typical of what most schools are saying.
Gopher Hole: What things are you working on to continue to improve yourself as a player?
Paul Friendshuh: Definitely, strength. You could maybe see in that last game, when it got down to the line, I just need to get stronger and box out better. Rebound better. Stuff like that. I think that my skills are there, but I just need to increase in size and weight.
Gopher Hole: It looks like you have actually gotten bigger than last season (He was listed at 6-foot-7, 190-pounds last year).
Paul Friendshuh: I definitely have. I am 210 now. I’m 6-9, 6-10 in shoes. My goal is to be leaner, stronger, faster. There is always ways to improve.
Gopher Hole: Are you pleased with how much you have improved even since last year at this time?
Paul Friendshuh: I am very pleased, but like I said there is lots of room for improvement. If I keep going at this rate, I feel that by the end of the season that we will have a good shot of going to state and doing well there.
Gopher Hole: Have you thought about colleges in terms of when you would even try to make a decision or is that still far away?
Paul Friendshuh: To be 100% honest. Yes and no. By this time next year, I’d probably make a decision or have made a decision. Obviously, don’t want to rush anything, but I don’t want to wait too long. But this upcoming AAU season will definitely be a big teller about how good I am and my range of possibilities.