Words by Justin Walsh

Derrick Favors – Naismith Trophy Award Winner as the top boys basketball player in the country. Derrick Favors – Gatorade Player of the Year for the state of Georgia. Derrick Favors – 3rd pick in the 2010 Mock Draft by Draft Express.

Derrick is an enigma, wrapped in a codex. He’s been compared to a mix of Chris Bosh and Elton Brand with a dash of Kevin Garnett. He’s bigger than the state of Georgia, his image is blocked by the U.S. Government on Satellite photography, he’s got metal muscle-laden arms a la Jax in Mortal Kombat. OK, maybe that last part was embellished.

All jokes aside, Derrick Favors has the state of Georgia on his back, with the expectations of ACC Freshman of the year stuffed in the pockets of his jeans, the demands of having every NBA scout and ESPN analyst stamping him with a possible No. 1 pick in the NBA Draft next year, effectively assuring that anything less—even if that means just a few slots lower than they project—will be a failure.

Favors doesn’t worry about all that. When asked about the outrageously high expectations, opponents asking for autographs after games and being plastered in more magazines than Octomom, he simply stated, “I’m kind of just used to it now. I treat it as if it’s another part of the game.”

Nights of 38 points and 15 boards are just another part of the game. Boosting rival HS teams’ revenues simply by being on their schedule is just another part of the game. Being the savior of a state’s future in basketball is just another part of the game.