Starting Five

Last spring term, I studied abroad at the London Centre with the three seniors on the men’s basketball team: Andrew Borresen, Shane “Blade” Cullian and Ryan “The General” DePouw. The trio lived in flat 3 of our housing complex on Manson Place in South Kensington, and I often made the trek from flat 8 to talk life and quite frequently, basketball. Here is a tidbit of what I learned:

Andrew Borresen seemingly had the London Underground Tube system engrained in his brain from day one. It was as if he lived vicariously through his older brother and fellow London Centre alum, Erik Borresen, years earlier. The sugar-based portion of his diet consisted strictly of blueberry muffins. He purchased the £1 muffins at a local supermarket called Sainsbury’s. Borresen more often than not took advantage of that deal.

Shane Cullian is an Everton FC supporter, which speaks to the content of his character—he’s a great guy. Shane thoroughly enjoyed his Tom Clancy novels, Sherlock Holmes’ museums, and more than anything else, Professor Fosdal. The British Life and Culture professor—who gave a Scottish independence lecture at Lawrence on Oct. 2—bonded with Shane over World War II, spies and his curious perspective on “America.”

Last but not least, Ryan DePouw. Plain and simple, the man loves his basketball. So much so that he once listened to a three-plus hour Memphis Grizzlies’ podcast from 2:00 to 5:00 a.m. on a Saturday. I once told him about a basketball-related tweet—minutes after it had been posted—to which DePouw responded, “Dude, I heard about that a week ago. Where have you been?” He’s a basketball encyclopedia, and recently became the 22nd player in Lawrence history to record 1,000 career points.

I caught up with the guys again to ask several pertinent questions. This week’s column is Part I, a sneak peak of the interview. Come back next week to enjoy Part II.


Q: If you could go back to London for just one hour, how would you fill your time?

Ryan: I think that I would just free roam the town. Head through Hyde Park, make my way over to the River Thames, and just take in the sights one more time. Or I might just head straight to the pub and people watch for an hour. Who knows, really?

Andrew: If I could go back to foggy London town for just one hour, my time would definitely start off by walking off the District Line at South Kensington station. I’d snag three cookies from Ben’s Cookies, stroll down Old Brompton Road, and stop by good ol’ Manson Place. I’d make sure to snag our crew of LU and Drexel University friends, a few bottles of wine, stride it up Queen’s Gate, and we’d all play pickup football in Hyde Park together again.

Shane: To accompany Andrew’s (Marty’s) response, I would also take the tube to the highly regarded Kensington Station. I would also stop by our favorite convenience store, Tesco, for multiple bottles of wine and some snacks for a “football” filled afternoon in Hyde Park with our Drexel companions. However, I would probably deviate early from the group and join my favorite professor/father figure Michael Fosdal at Gloucester Arms for a pint and a pipe smoke, while discussing World War Two and watching Queen’s Park Ranger Football. (I’m strange, I get it.)


Q: Walk us through your routine from two hours before the game, until tip-off.

Ryan: Get to the gym, listen to some music, watch a little of the women’s game and then it’s straight to the training room, because I’m 22 with the joints of a 60-year-old. After I’m done with that I try to just relax and stay loose…which usually means making fun of Blade or Andrew until pre-game starts.

Andrew: I go through the same routine before every home game. Back at the room, I’ll take a shower, shave, and usually throw on some good music, too. About 90 minutes prior to tip, I’ll drive over to Alex, grab my uniform and head up to the gym to watch some of the women’s game. I’ve got a pretty good playlist of some current stuff I like to listen to before every game. From there, I’ll get dressed and head to the training room, where I ice my feet and get nice and loose. The body’s getting old, so I like to take my time and dial in while I’m preparing in there. All that’s left to do is assemble the group in the team room, listen to coach’s pregame speech, and get ready for warm-ups.

Shane: I try to arrive to the gym about two hours before game time (after ordering an Italian Night Club sandwich from Jimmy John’s) in order to glance at the LU scouting report provided by Joe Vanden Acker, as well as to gossip with [freshman] Eric Weiss about the halftime free-throw competition. After that, I’ll throw on my Matchbox Twenty playlist, head down to the locker room, possibly shave if I have an ungodly amount of facial hair, and then head to the training room in search of multiple heat pads to warm up my knees—which are due for a replacement in my early 30’s most likely.