A disclaimer: Scot Pollard, the subject of this month's Twitter Q&A, is no longer on Twitter.
Which is a shame. Come up with a list of the true characters in Kansas sports history, and Pollard is right up there. (Just type the name "Scot Pollard" into the youtube search engine and prepared to be entertained.)
He arrived at the University of Kansas in the fall of 1993, a 6-foot-11 Mormon with a gift for blocking shots and a big appetite for college life.
After graduating from KU four years later, Pollard was drafted in the first round by Detroit. Thus began an 11-year Odyssey of an NBA career that took him to the Pistons, Sacramento Kings, Indiana Pacers, Cleveland Cavaliers and finally, the Boston Celtics, where he retired with a championship in 2008.
He's mostly remembered in Sacramento, where fans called him "Samurai Scot." His fashion style ranged from mohawks to ponytails to black fingernail polish. Sometimes he said outrageous things. Often he angered people. But he was always interesting.
What is Pollard doing these days? Whatever he wants. He never really left Lawrence, keeping an offseason home there throughout his playing days. He's dabbled in acting (click here for a glimpse of his grisly role in "The Axeman at Cutter's Creek"). He has no day job. Mostly, he gets to hang out just being Scot Pollard.
This interview was done through a series of emails.
Why aren’t you on Twitter? You could be owning Twitter right now!
I was on twitter, quit due to stalkers. Got back on again, and then quit after I reached 4000 followers. Also, I had someone using my tweets to interfere with my being a parent. Since I had always viewed Twitter as a game, like solitaire, on my phone, it was a no brainer to give it up.
What was your Twitter handle?
My first twitter handle was planetpollard, I think. The second one was scotpollard31 if I am not mistaken.
How would you describe your college career in 140 characters or less?
I would describe my college career as being an amazing experience. I was lucky to be on great teams with great players, and a great coaching staff. We won a lot more than we lost. We worked hard. We fell short, especially my senior season, of our ultimate goal, but I was happy to have been a part of 3 conference championships, including the last big 8 season champs, and the first big 12 champs.
Do you still keep in touch with your college coach, Roy Williams?
I haven't spoken with Coach Williams in some time. I will always love and respect that man for the discipline he instilled in me which has clearly made me more successful as a result, as well as the ability to enjoy the journey, which was a consistent phrase he used.
Why (and when) did you choose to move back to Lawrence?
I have had a home in Lawrence since 1998. I graduated in 1997 after living in the Jayhawk towers all four years of school. After my rookie year, I bought a house that would be my offseason home every year since. The why I moved back? When making a decision of where to have an offseason home from the NBA, I chose a place that was familiar, fairly cheap in terms of property taxes, gas, groceries, etc, as well as one of my favorite places on earth! Being from Utah, San Diego, even a short stint in Washington state, given those options I felt that Lawrence made the most sense. After being here off and on for 21 years, it's definitely home.
What is a typical day like for you?
A typical day for me depends on where I am. In Lawrence it means I am catching up with old friends, working on a movie, going through the pile of mail that has built up since I was last here, trying to catch a Jayhawks volleyball, football, and oh yeah, basketball game!
How involved are you with KU basketball these days?
I am a booster, alumni, K club member, and fan of KU basketball. I don't make it to practices, get to 2 or 3 games a year. That's about my involvement with KU basketball.
What are your thoughts on this season’s Jayhawks?
My thoughts on this year's Jayhawks are exactly what they were when I first saw them play during KUbball camp last summer. The most talented, athletic team I have ever seen on the college level. They have the ability to go down in history, even with the number of losses they have. They also, because of their average age, have the ability to not realize potential that their talent would otherwise allow. I wish them luck and the mental fortitude to capitalize on their talent and hard work as the post season drama unfolds.
You had some different hair styles when you were playing – including our personal favorite, the double pony tail. Which was your favorite?
My favorite hairstyle from my playing days was the ponytail. All of the other ones required more work or sessions at a salon!
Was Shaquille O'Neal the toughest defensive assignment you ever had? What was it like trying to guard him?
Yes, Shaq was the hardest player to guard. He was big, fast, quick, and athletic. I had to foul him, push, pull, anything I could do to slow him down. The hardest part, though, was trying to hate him. It would have been easier to be physical and in general a nuisance to someone I disliked. (there were plenty of other guys who I didn't like, much easier to guard!) I genuinely liked and still like the guy. If we had been teammates, I'm pretty sure we would have been friends as well. He's a great dude.
If you could start your NBA career all over again, is there anything you would have done differently?
If I could start my NBA career over again, the only thing I would have done differently was try to slow it down and enjoy the journey even more than I already tried to. I had a blast. I really enjoyed playing basketball for my entire career, dating back to being a little kid learning how to play from my father and brothers.
Complex.com had you on its list of “The Worst Players to Win an NBA Championship.” Your response?
HAHA. I was one of 450 in the world for 11 years. I've never heard of complex.com. They’ve heard of me. Does that answer that?
What do you think is people’s biggest misconception is about you?
I've discovered, since retirement, that people ACTUALLY think I'm some sort of wild person. In the business world there have been some opportunities lost as a result of that misconception. First and foremost, I am a family man. Nothing matters more to me than my family. My "on camera" persona, in the NBA, helped me, in my opinion, play in the league longer than if I had been simply a "banger with a good work ethic." Unfortunately, again I discovered this upon retiring and continue to battle the perception that I am a famewhore, unreliable, crazy party guy. It's ok, because my family knows who I am, and I know who I am. But, yeah, "people" think what they’re going to think no matter what ...