The next player I was able to get in contact with and conduct an interview with was another Atlantic Sun guy. This time we take a trip down south to Florida, where I got the opportunity to talk to North Florida forward Carter Hendricksen.
Hendricksen is a 6’7, 215 pound forward who is from Kentucky. Carter saw himself jump into a bigger role in his sophomore season where he went on to average 14.9 points, 7.1 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game. That was a monumental jump from his freshman year where he only averaged four points in 17 minutes a game.
Carter also finished fifth in points per game in the conference, fourth in total points and fifth in free throw percentage. He would also finish with second team all conference honors and landed on the all tournament team for the Atlantic Sun conference tournament. We talked about all of these accomplishments plus more.
2019-20 season thoughts
Q: You finished 2019-20 top five in the Atlantic Sun in points per game with 14.9, finished top five in total points with 491, top five in free throw percentage with 82.7 percent. And you topped it off finishing second team all conference. What is your personal opinion on your sophomore season?
A: “I believe my sophomore season went well. I’ve always been a confident player, but this season helped me build even more confidence as well understand what it takes to win, be a leader, and be a champion.”
Carter’s role on the Ospreys
Q: From your freshman to sophomore year you increased in basically every stat that I can see. What did you work on in the off-season to make that kind of jump? And what did you think your role was at North Florida this season?
A: “In the off-season I really focused on improving every aspect of my game, since I am a pretty versatile. Another huge focus for me was my body. I worked really hard to get stronger and more athletic so that I can play inside and out. I feel my role at UNF this season was to just be myself – be physical, get rebounds, and make shots.”
2019-20 coaches theme
Q: As team North Florida finished the year 21-12 overall and finished second in the conference at 13-3 in a tie breaker with Liberty. What was the message at the beginning at the year from Coach Driscoll and how did that message mold the team together as the season progressed?’
A: “Coach Driscoll has a theme at the beginning of each season, and this year’s was “Stay In Your Lane”. We all knew we had the talent to win a championship, so us players really took Coach D’s message to heart and found our roles on the team and tried to be the best versions of ourselves in that role since we knew that what Coach preached would lead to success.”
When Covid-19 hit
Q: You were obviously able to finish the conference tournament and it probably wasn’t the way you wanted to end, but the weirdness finally kicked in. What aspect of your game did you work on the most when you were stuck at home during quarantine?
A: “Throughout quarantine, I put an emphasis on getting my body more mobile and flexible. I also got into whatever gym I could to continue progressing on all aspect of the game.”
What will be different from Carter?
Q: What will fans be able to see different from Carter Hendricksen when they see you hit the floor come November?
A: “In November, fans will see a player that has improved on his body, and is going to be more of a leader. All in all, they will see a more mature Carter that still does whatever it takes to win.”
2020-21 season outlook
Q: What is your personal goal for the North Florida Ospreys in 2020-21?
A: “My goal for this upcoming season is to go 1-0 everyday and constantly improve so that we can win an ASUN Championship.”
Carter and I got into a lot of good topics that I was able to ask about and he gave me some really good answers. I am so excited to be able to watch Carter hit the floor for North Florida come November and see what kind of improvements that he has made. He will be first team all conference next season, book it.
I want to thank Carter personally about giving me the opportunity to ask him some questions about himself and the team overall. I want to wish him the best of luck in the 2020-21 season and in any other future goals.