St. Mary’s Omar Samhan is very quotable

After dropping 32 points on Villanova, St. Mary’s big man, Omar Samhan, had a number of funny quotes in the post game press conference.

From the box score to his press conference one-liners, Samhan was both dominating and entertaining. He went 13 of 16 from the field — “I should have been 16-for-16, to be honest,” he said — to live up his nickname, Beast, which he has tattooed on the inside of his lip. That body art belies a throwback post game that showcased his bevy of back-to-the-basket moves and his soft touch.

Samhan said that the N.C.A.A. tournament has been a joy for him, because he regularly sees triple teams in the West Coast Conference. Villanova rarely doubled him Saturday, because they were scared to leave the Gaels host of deft shooters. Samhan criticized Villanova Coach Jay Wright for that decision.

“I get it,” he said. “I’m a slow white guy, and I’m overweight. So maybe you don’t respect me because I have good numbers. But after I kill you the first half, what are you waiting for. I don’t know what he wanted. Did he want me to have 40?”

Samhan wears two-year-old low-cut sneakers that are so worn there are holes in the toes big enough to stick his fingers in.

“We’re so old school,” Samhan said. “I’m in low tops. Our star point guard is named Mickey. Enough said.”

Samhan talks a lot of trash on and off the court, but in the process he exudes confidence that helps to settle his teammates down. When Villanova made its run, Samhan was usually there with a bucket to answer.

Basketball-wise, he can’t really jump and he’s not very quick, but he has a great touch and has a knack for getting open shots around the basket. His go-to move is to throw a little elbow shiver, which knocks the defender on his heels so he has enough room to get his shot off. The draft buzz lately has Samhan going somewhere in the second round, but it’s rare for guys his size (6’11”) to last that long. It will be interesting to see where he’s eventually drafted, because he’s not a player that is going to wow people with his athleticism in private workouts.

One thing is for sure — Samhan’s draft stock is getting a huge boost with the Gaels’ run to the Sweet Sixteen. St. Mary’s has the unenviable task of playing Baylor in Houston, which is only about 3.5 hours from the Bears’ campus in Waco. The crowd promises to be partisan, so Samhan will have his work cut out for him if he hopes to keep the Baylor fans quiet.

Photo from fOTOGLIF

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