The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

Chapman eager to step into bigger role

Junior Joe Chapman spent the off season like all other college basketball players — training and conditioning for the season. However, Chapman had extra motivation to push himself harder this year.

Last season he received the "Super Sub" award, given to the top reserve on the team. Although Chapman was happy to be selected for the award, it is not one he said he wants to repeat.

"I'm looking to define a bigger role, I don't want to get the sixth man (award) again this year," he said.

So he took his determination into the gym and added weight.

"In my three years this has been my best and hardest conditioning," said Chapman, who gained 15 pounds over the summer.

The extra poundage should help him adjust to playing at the small forward position, where he's hoping to get more minutes.

"My goal is to go out and play hard every game if I'm playing the two, three or one," he said. "It will be a big help if I guard the three man. Right now I don't see myself as a reserve guard.

"It's a great opportunity to play. I'm getting well-rounded with the position."

However, with sophomore Brandon Bell on medical leave for the season, Chapman is the only experienced guard besides senior Travis Diener and sophomore Dameon Mason. This lack of depth means he will likely be called on as a reserve in the backcourt.

Assistant coach Bo Ellis doesn't think the added responsibilities will be a problem for Chapman.

"I don't know if it will be any more pressure on him," Ellis said. "Joe has been here for three years and has played a significant role in Marquette's success. More important is the leadership he'll bring to the team. He's been to the top of the mountain before and will be able to help the young kids.

"The only expectations you put on young men like Joe is that everyday he comes out to play," he said.

Regardless of where he plays, Ellis expects Chapman to be one of the top defenders on the perimeter.

Chapman agreed that defense will need to be one of his strong points this season, but said that it is an area the whole team can improve on.

"We need to get back to the way Marquette is known to play defense," he said.

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