2013 forward Chris Walker is arguably the best player in the country.
SLAM: Why is LeBron your favorite player?
CW: Because he can do it all, and he’s a real dude. I once reached out to him on Twitter, asking him for some advice on where to go to school, and he actually responded. That was huge for me, just knowing he’s a real dude like that.
SLAM: What music are you listening to these days?
CW: 2 Chainz, Future, Lil’ Wayne, Waka Flocka, Drake, Wiz Khalifa, Nicki Minaj, Rick Ross, Tyga, Plies…that’s pretty much it.
SLAM: I see you’re big on tattoos. Are you trying to get fully tatted?
CW: Yeah, I am. Most of my body is tatted up, and I’m saving up for a scroll on my arm right now.
SLAM: Were you ever worried that having tattoos at a young age could cast a negative perception, with recruiting and all that? And have you seen any difference in your recruiting process because of them?
CW: I was worried about it at first, but I quickly realized schools don’t care. As long as you have a good head on your shoulders, and you don’t get in trouble, they are fine with getting tattoos. Maybe a school like Duke cares, but I don’t think most coaches care at all.
SLAM: Did you ever consider attending a “prestigious” private school instead of a relatively unknown public school?
CW: Yeah, after 9th grade, when I started getting ranked, I told my mom a few times that I wanted to transfer. But she told me to stay put and everything will work itself out. Now, at this point in my high school career, there’s no point to transfer. Everything is fine; I’m still getting offers.
SLAM: Being such a young kid, yet having so much going on around you at all times, does the constant pressure and attention ever get overwhelming?
CW: Yeah, it definitely gets tough sometimes. But I just keep a tight circle, and when I have time, I try to chill and play video games like a normal kid. Other than that, I’m in the classroom or in the gym at all times, just trying to stay focused and not let anything distract me.
SLAM: Do classmates and teachers treat, or view you, any differently from the rest of your peers?
CW: A little bit, yeah. It’s crazy, but I’m used to it now. Like, in gym class, everyone wants to be on your team and stuff like that. And teachers treat me a little bit different—they’ve set a high standard for me, so sometimes when I mess up, they try to make an example out of me in front of everyone else.
SLAM: How do you differentiate between true friends and sycophants—people who are nice to you because they want something in return in the future?
CW: I don’t really know. I guess I just go with the flow. People who knew me before I got “big time,” I chill with them. I keep a tight circle, which I think is necessary when you’re trying to reach goals. I’m just trying to stay humble and focused, and hopefully make it, my man.