At 6-8, 260 pounds, Maryland forward Charles Mitchell has no problem using his size to create space on the interior. A generous push here, an encouraging shove of a defender there. It’s all part of life on the inside.
And as Maryland prepares to take on North Carolina on Tuesday night, it's becoming more clear where Mitchell learned some of his tricks.
“Back in middle school and high school, I used to love Tyler Hansbrough at North Carolina just because of how hard he played,” Mitchell told the media this week. “Not because of his offensive skill or defense. He was just hard-nosed, a bully-type player I am, trying to be a bully every time.”
Hansbrough, a brash competitor who played at UNC for four seasons and left North Carolina as the ACC’s all-time leading scorer, would go on to be drafted 13th overall by the Indiana Pacers in 2009 NBA Draft and is currently playing for the Toronto Raptors.
“He was the same player as me, just a bully, hard-nosed, didn’t care, bloody nose, everything,” Mitchell continued. “So I like those type players because that resembles me a little bit.”
The bloody nose that Mitchell is referring to, of course, was an incident in March 2007 when Duke forward Gerald Henderson hit Hansbrough in the face late in a game, sending him to the ground bloodied before he popped back up looking to have a stern word with the Duke freshman.
That, in part, helped Hansbrough earn the nickname “Psycho T”.
“I ain’t Psycho Chuck,” Mitchell told the media with a laugh. “I ain’t psycho now, but you’ll hear me screaming and yelling and pushing people around a couple times.”
Maryland takes on North Carolina on Tuesday at 8 p.m.