One On One With Thornhill HS Forward Stefan Nastic
The NCAA’s Stanford Cardinals of the high-regarded Pac-10 conference have added another Canadian resident to its recruiting class for next season … when Stefan Nastic, a 6’11” Serbian-born player who currently lives in Thornhill, Ontario, verbally committed to the school two weeks ago.
Nastic played basketball at Thornhill High School during the Fall but trained with the Serbian national team program during the summers. He was a member of the Serbian U16 national team two years ago and then went on to train with the U18 last summer.
Nastic, who possesses a deadly outside game to go along with a well-rounded inside game, joins a recruiting class the California media has dubbed the “Super 6” as he joins Toronto’s 6’10″/212lbs Dwight Powell, Washington’s 6’10″/200lbs John Gage & 5’11″/170lbs Aaron Bright, Cali’s 6’6″/180lbs Anthony Brown and Montana’s 6’7″/200lbs Josh Huestis.
Stanford’s 2010 recruiting class is currently ranked as 13th best nationally by scout.com. Before committing to Stanford, Nastic was being pursued by NCAA Division I powers Georgetown, Duke, Maryland and Virgina among others.
What was the major deciding factor to your decision to going to Stanford?
Stanford was my first choice from the beginning. Stanford’s combination of academic excellence and strong athletic tradition influenced my decision.
In terms of on the court, what are you looking to accomplish in your freshmen season?
I am very excited for the upcoming season, I will continue to work hard and help my team in every way I can.
What are your plans for this off-season? Are you going back to Serbia or down to California for training with the Stanford program?
I work on my skills all year round, especially during the off-season. This includes high quality team training and competitions. At this moment I am focused on school and commitments to my respective HS/Club/AAU basketball teams.
How important was your experience training with the Serbian National Team over the summers?
Serbia is one of the top basketball countries in Europe. Training with the Serbian National team for the past few summers has been extremely beneficial.
I was introduced to the European approach to the game of basketball. Not only was I able to develop as a basketball player, but travelling with the team was great for my personal growth. I was in an unfamiliar environment where everything was different than I am used to.
We would practice twice daily; in the morning on individual skills, while the evening was reserved for the reviewing of the team concepts.
Stepping out of my comfort zone and being in different situations is what made it such an important and unique experience that will assist me with my transition to university life.
Why exactly did you choose to go over to Serbia to train?
Coming from a close-knit family, the summer is the perfect time to visit my grandparents. In Serbia, Basketball is a very popular sport with a great tradition of successful players and coaches.
From a very young age I was involved in some high quality basketball camps. I was noticed by coaches and continuously worked on my skills. The Serbian basketball federation contacted me regarding tryouts for U16 Serbian National Team.
What are your thoughts on playing with what the media has called Stanford’s “Super Six Freshmen”?
I am excited to be a part of a new group of talented and hardworking players. I look forward to helping build a strong basketball program at Stanford for the years to come.
How far do you want to take basketball? What is your ultimate goal?
My goal is to keep working hard, stay focused, and work towards my dream of playing in the NBA one day.