Thursday's Conversation With Boise State's Garrett Patton
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Welcome to Thursday’s Conversation. Each week, one Mountain West student-athlete will be featured by answering a series of questions.
Joining the conversation this week is Boise State’s Garrett Patton. The senior is a member of the No. 34-ranked Broncos men’s tennis team. Playing in the No. 2 singles and No. 1 doubles slots, Patton is looking to lead Boise State to its fourth-straight Mountain West Tennis Championship.
Question: You’ve moved up in singles play this year, opening the season at the No. 2 position. Are you looking forward to the challenge?
Answer: I think it’s a natural progression for me. I feel comfortable where I’m at with my game now and I think the plan was always to move up each year. We have a really strong No. 1 with Thomas Tenreiro and I’m happy to be at the top of the lineup. But, I know I have to hold my own and keep playing well because we have a lot of younger guys on the team that are playing really well.
Q: You clinched the victory for the Broncos in the season-opener at Hawai‘i. While that match wasn’t a nail-biter, you have been in several matches in the past where your result decided who won or lost the match. Are you aware of the importance of the match when you’re playing it, or are you just focused on trying to win and tune out the team score?
A: The idea is to tune it all out, but to be honest, I notice it and I love it, especially when the match is close. Last year, I loved the feeling of being the guy when the match is close. We talk about it a lot on our team and we call it ‘being call on’ and for us, it’s really an honor to be in that position and to be the guy that has the opportunity to clinch the match for the team.
Q: You’ve been a strong doubles player throughout your time at Boise State. Who will you be teaming up with this year and do you have any goals for what you’d like to accomplish in doubles?
A: Right now looking like Toby Mitchell will be my doubles partner. He’s my roommate and he’s one of my best friends and I’m happy to be playing with him. Playing with Tobey is easy because our games complement each other’s so well. Our first goal is to stay at No. 1 doubles so to do that is to keep on winning. Our next goal is that we realize we’ll play ranked teams and if we get enough good wins we can get into the rankings and get into the NCAA’s.
Q: What’s it like to have your dad (Greg Patton) as your coach in college?
A: It’s been a positive experience for sure. He’s a great coach and he’s made the transition easy from dad to coach. He treats us all like sons and the guys are all my brothers and they all understand that we are family.
Q: You’ve been an Academic All-MW honoree each of your first three years at Boise State. What’s the key to being a good student?
A: I think the main thing is to be organized, especially with the schedule of a student-athlete. You have to be creative when you’re on the road. I just got back yesterday from Hawai‘i and am headed Los Angeles (Wednesday). You have to be in contact with professors and let them know schedule. Here at Boise State, the professors are here for you every step of the way. My academic advisor, Eric Kaile, has really helped me out a lot in terms of managing my schedule and putting me in a position to succeed.
Q: Before each match, I’ve noticed you guys like to throw the football around. How did that get started?
A: It started a couple of years back. In the fall we’d play a game of football every Friday. It got competitive to say the least. We were keeping track of what the teams were and had a running tally of wins and losses going. It was very intense. We stopped playing in the spring as we didn’t want to get injured during the season. But, we still pass the football around before our matches because it’s a fun way to warm up and just be loose before you step on the court.
Do you have a student-athlete you’d like to see featured in an upcoming Thursday's Conversation? Contact Dan Johnson at djohnson@TheMW.com