MEMBER SIGN IN
Don't have an account? Click Here
My Foreign Trip Experience: Curtis Borchardt
Courtesy: Stanford Athletics  
Release: 09/01/2011

Sept. 1, 2011


Cardinal Players Looking Forward To Spain

My Foreign Trip Experience: Goods

ESPN.com's Diamond Leung: Season Preview

STANFORD, Calif.- Ten years ago, the Stanford men's basketball team embarked on a summer tour of Australia and New Zealand.

Curtis Borchardt was coming off a sophomore campaign in which he missed the season's final 14 games due to a stress fracture of the navicular bone in his right foot and 17 contests overall.

The summer of 2001 represented an opportunity for Borchardt to rehab from the injury and bounce back strong as a junior. Borchardt did just that, averaging 16.9 points and 11.4 rebounds per game in 2001-02 while establishing a school record with 85 blocked shots.

Named an Honorable Mention All-American by the Associated Press and Basketball America during his junior year, Borchardt was then selected in the first round (18th overall) of the 2002 NBA Draft by the Orlando Magic before eventually being traded to the Utah Jazz.

So even though Borchardt was unavailable to take the court in Australia and New Zealand that summer, the native of Redmond, Wash., offers a unique perspective in this case. Meanwhile, Borchardt was still able to share in the cultural experience with his teammates and help build chemistry for the 2001-02 campaign, which resulted in an NCAA Tournament appearance.

With Stanford scheduled to depart on Saturday, Sept. 3, for an 11-day trip to Spain, we look back at Borchardt's foreign tour experience in 2001.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

After missing much of your sophomore season with the injury, were you able to play at all on the trip?

Borchardt: "I did not play. It was just a two-week vacation for me. I worked out some with our strength coach on that trip, but I didn't play."

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Would you say that most of the guys on that team had been overseas before?

Borchardt: "I don't think so. I think that for most of us, it was kind of our first time doing so."

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

How much of that trip was a bonding experience for the team?

Borchardt: "I think it definitely ended up being that way. We had lost a lot of big-time players, so it was a chance for us to kind of build chemistry and a lot of different guys stepped up to the plate. Tony Giovacchini had time at point guard, Julius Barnes wound up getting more minutes and of course, Casey Jacobsen got to take on an even bigger role. So I think it was important for us to just get a chance to play together, and play full games together. We really had not done that with the Collins twins, Michael McDonald and all of those guys taking the lion's share of the minutes."

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Describe the competition level and style of the teams you played against during that trip?

Borchardt: "You could tell that we were playing against men, so they were definitely stronger and maybe a bit faster since they had been playing together for a lot longer. But I think we did okay. I can't remember our record on the trip, but we won a couple games and also lost a few. Pretty much every game was a very good challenge; there weren't really any blowouts either way. So it was good competition, and definitely worthwhile for us as a basketball team."

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Any memorable stories off the court from that trip?

Borchardt: "A few of us - actually, most of us - did some bungee jumping on the trip in New Zealand. Myself, Matt Lottich, student manager Olatunde Sobomehin (who played four games in the 2002-03 season) and our strength coach John Murray all did what was called the `Thrillogy', which was three separate jumps with the last one over 500 feet. So that was my highlight, because I wasn't playing, but we just had a good time on the trip. It was a really incredible experience, though it was a little bit cold. We also took a boat trip, kind of like a speedboat trip up this river, and it was so cold that when we got off, we were all trying to smile and we could not because our faces were frozen. So I think I have some pretty funny pictures from that."

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Looking back, do you think the trip had a positive outcome on the team for the following season, given the goal was to get new guys some playing time?

Borchardt: "I do think so. I think it's always good for a young team to be able to go, and in the long run, you just need to play. I think that, without that trip, it would have taken another week or two to get things rolling in the preseason and we can't really afford that. So there were definitely tangible benefits. It kind of gave us the confidence booster we needed to work together as a unit."

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Anything that sticks out from the culture and the countries you visited that was a shock?

Borchardt: "I think it's going to be a bigger shocker for the current team, going to a place where English isn't the main language. Nothing really shocked me, because the language was the same. There were not any real big surprises for me."

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

You mentioned this year's team. It's somewhat of a similar situation with a group of younger players who do not yet have extensive starting experience.

Borchardt: "It's definitely an ideal time for them to make this trip. From what I hear, they're playing against some pretty good teams. The competition level is going to be better than anything they will face all season, so I think that always helps to make you feel better about playing against other veteran guys. They are really going to have to compete hard against that level of competition if they want a chance to win."

by Joseph Beyda, Athletics Communications/Media Relations.


#gostanford



advertisement

THE WEEKLY AXE
Weekly Axe Ad Space
FRESH FROM THE FARM
2014 Cardinal & White Spring Game
Muscle Milk Student Athletes