Kyle Hines is the 6-5 senior leader of the UNC-Greensboro Spartans, but he's a lot more. In addition to a 17.3 ppg average and a streak of 56 consecutive games of scoring in double figures, Hines is a gentleman-scholar, a blogger and one of the most well-spoken ballplayers you could ever hope to meet. Over the summer, he led off my SoCon preview at ESPN, but he led off the season by being named Mid-Majority Baller of the Week for his 25 point, 9 rebound performance in a grand upset at Georgia Tech.
After a tough nonconference loss to Kent State last Saturday, the first-ever MMBOW to be interviewed on this site was kind enough to sit down with your host to discuss a variety of topics: the season so far, what it's like for a big-city NYC kid to attend school in North Carolina, Waffle Houses, 1979 Cadillacs, and the relative weight of honors from The Mid-Majority and Dick Vitale.TMM: You still have that double-figure scoring streak going. Do you think about it much, or is it just one of those things that [UNC-Greensboro sports information director] Mike Hirschman uses to bother us media members?KH:
I don't really think about it... doesn't really pop into my head at all. I guess stat guys such as Mike like that kind of stuff. It's all in good fun. Certain things like the streak, I wouldn't have known I did that if someone wasn't keeping track. I guess when it's all said and done and I look back on my career, I'll probably say, 'wow, look at all the things I did.'TMM: So when you're looking back, do you think you'll rather have a bunch of numbers on a sheet, or a photo book of shots of you dunking on guys?KH:
Both, gimme both! Naww, seriously, I don't need no pictures, I don't need no stats, I just want wins. I'll take zero points and zeroes across the board if we just win the ballgame.TMM: You have a few wins, three of them, including that big one at Georgia Tech to start the year. How do you feel the season's gone for the Spartans so far?KH:
It's been up and down, we've definitely shown a lot of potential. We've played really well at times, we've played really bad at times, kinda been mediocre at some points. In hindsight, it's all preparing us for conference. Even though you can look at all this now as important, this is all preparation for the SoCon. It's going to be a long run, and the only way we get into the NCAA Tournament is if we play well in conference and if we play well for four days in March.TMM: I was talking to some of the folks who broadcast SoCon games last year, and Cliff Ellis (who's moved on to Coastal Carolina now) said very emphatically that you reminded him of Adrian Dantley: same body type, same type of game, same nose for the rim. Are you familiar with Dantley, or is it just old dudes like me who still remember short-shorts era guys like him?KH:
I can't say I've seen him play, but I know he was a really, really good player. He had a great NBA career. For Mr. Ellis to compare me to him, that's a remarkable comparison.TMM: You're doing the blog for the NCAA's Double-A Zone. How'd that start, and did they have to convince you or twist your arm to do it? KH:
One of our assistant SID's had the idea, and asked me if I wanted to do it. I said I was definitely interested in doing something like that, so we just went for it. They didn't have to convince me, I like talking to people, I like writing. It's been great, writing about our team and sharing different insights, letting people see the inside of how we play, what we do on a daily basis. A lot of people don't get the opportunity to see what it's like, so it's definitely a good thing.TMM: It's been great to read. The details have been wonderful, like the entry about getting dunked on by Nick Schneiders from USC-Upstate. How tall was that guy, really?KH:
He was about 7-2, 7-3 maybe. He had to be the tallest guy I'd ever played against, he was really long. I was told to expect a big tall guy, but he was like Yao Ming or Shawn Bradley or something.TMM: So tell me about your impressions of North Carolina, you've been here for a five years now. What's it like, and how's it different from back home in New Jersey? What's there to do here?KH:
When I first came out here, I really underestimated Greensboro. I mean, I'm coming from the New York area, everything's more fast paced, more big-city, but Greensboro's a nice town. A very underrated city. There's a lot more to do here than people actually think there is. I like it because it's more comfortable, everything's a lot slower-paced. People are a lot nicer. Everyone in New York is kinda like, you know, rude... everybody's got an attitude.TMM: I know, tell me about it. I got out when I could.KH:
Everybody's so nice. Everyone wants to talk to you, they welcome you with open arms. I've really grown to appreciate it here.TMM: And back in New Jersey and New York, they don't have Waffle Houses. What's that about?KH:
They don't have Waffle Houses, they don't have cookouts, they don't have Biscuitville. There's a lot of differences. There's no such thing as sweet tea in New Jersey. Up north, everything's on a muffin. Down here, everything's on a biscuit.TMM: When you go on to the next level, whatever that is, are there things you're going to miss about this area?KH:
I'll have spent four years here, I'm definitely going to miss this place. I've grown here. I guess you can say I've grown from a boy to an adult in North Carolina. Coming here was my first opportunity to leave home and live on my own, do things on my own, and I've met so many friends here and become so comfortable. It'll always have a special place for me. When it comes time for me to leave, that's going to be really hard.TMM: I was reading one of your old interviews and it said you liked to fix up old Cadillacs. What's that about, and do you have a specific Caddy that you especially prefer, a particular year?KH:
That's a bit of a misperception. He was asking me what I wanted to do when I got out of school, and I told him that was one of the things I wanted to do, just start a little Cadillac DeVille collection. So that was blown a little out of proportion.TMM: Damn journalists.KH:
I'd start with a 1979 Coupe DeVille
. It has that classic look to it. I think that's a nice starting point. Right around that time, it was the time for big, big cars... big gas-guzzlers. I definitely want to have one of those, then see what else is next.TMM: One last one, I gotta ask you. The week of the Georgia Tech game, both my site and Dick Vitale named you as the player of the week. I know what the answer is, and you can break it to me gently, but which honor meant more to you?KH:
I think both of them meant a lot.TMM: Oh, stop.KH:
No, I appreciate any time I can be recognized as a player of the week. The player of the week in the whole entire nation... there are a lot of schools out there, 15 players per team, for me to be that one player that's chosen by two different websites, by two different people, that's just unbelievable. It's crazy. When I looked at that, I was kind of shocked, realizing that two people said that in this particular week, I was the best player.Thanks for humoring us, Mr. Hines. You can catch UNCG in action this weekend when they begin their long 20-game SoCon schedule at Wofford.
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