“I like that pressure”


CHAMPAIGN (WCIA) — Big expectations?

No problem for Illinois freshman guard Mark Smith. The Edwardsville native and state’s reigning Mr. Basketball award winner is taking it all in stride.

“I like that pressure,” Smith said. “It doesn’t really phase me that much I’m just playing my game.”

Illinois head coach Brad Underwood hasn’t held back his love for Smith back, calling the freshman, “the most improved player I’ve ever seen in 30 years.”

“His growth is very much physical,” Underwood said. “He’s changing his body, he’s concentrating. He is an unrelenting worker, that’s why I know he’s going to have a great year and he’s going to be successful.”

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