June 25, 2007

Chalmers preparing for big year

Regarded as one of the best defenders in the country, Mario Chalmers has turned into maybe one of the better defenders to ever play at Kansas. The junior-to-be has led the conference in steals two straight seasons, and broke the freshman record for most steals. If his defensive skills aren't enough, the 6-foot-2, 195-pound guard is an offensive machine. Chalmers has finished second in scoring for the Jayhawks back-to-back years, and has been a key player for Bill Self's program.

When Chalmers committed to Kansas in May 2004, The Jayhawk basketball community knew they were getting someone special. The much heralded guard from Anchorage, Ala, ranked as the No. 2 point guard in the class of 2005, picked KU over Arizona and a host of other top programs.

Since that time, Chalmers has hauled in numerous awards and has established himself as one of the premier shooting guards in the country, not to mention arguably the best overall defender in the country.

Despite all of that, Chalmers stays humble and spends the off-season working on his strength and conditioning, realizing the summer is the time to become a better player.

"I'm focusing on everything right now because in the off-season, that's when you work on everything, weights and conditioning," said Chalmers after Wednesday's scrimmage. "During the season I focus more on one thing, so now I am really just working on everything.

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