Updated: Jun 11, 2022
Over the years, the state of Texas has been a consistent breeding ground for elite basketball talent. Even in elementary school, it’s not uncommon for Texas prospects to train and play together all year long. Among the next generation of hoopers from the Lone Star State is Texas Tech commit Drew Steffe. Steffe, a junior out of Memorial High School (TX), chose the Red Raiders over Colorado, Saint Louis, TCU, and Xavier while on an official visit in January. The 6’5” guard is the first commitment for Mark Adams’ 2023 class. This season, Steffe led his high school to its first district championship while going undefeated during the run. Against Heritage High School (TX) in the final week, he registered a remarkably balanced 13 points, 12 rebounds, seven assists, and six blocked shots. Showcasing strong basketball IQ, Steffe is a high-level shooter who has also developed an all-around package including playmaking and ball handling skills that contribute to winning.
As part of the Pro Insight Q&A series, Steffe discussed training with Tyler Relph and other Texas hoopers, enjoying his last AAU run with ProSkills this summer, what he will bring to Texas Tech, and more.
For the next installment of the Pro Insight Q&A series, we present Texas Tech commit Drew Steffe, from Frisco, Texas:
Pro Insight: How did you get to where you are today? Talk a bit about your background and family.
Drew Steffe: Well, my dad was an ex-basketball player and an ex-college coach, as well. He played at the D2 level pretty good and then he went and coached at Portland State for like two or three years and then he got out of it. But I mean basketball has been in my blood ever since I was like four years old and started dribbling the ball. I grew up in AAU since I was in like second grade — been playing AAU since second grade — so I've been playing basketball for a long time. My dad’s helped a lot of kids along the way. He used to have his own EYBL deal, like he used to coach Tyrese Maxey, De’Vion Harmon, all those kids, Chris Harris at Oklahoma State, guys like that…so he got through all those and then when I got brought up, he kind of took a step back and was a dad. I started playing with Team Griffin in eighth grade and that's how I kind of got brought up with the AAU circuit and all that. Got a couple offers along the way but I mean I’m from Frisco, Texas. Family is a big part of my life. Love them all. I kind of hoop and hang with my family and all my friends, so that's about it.
PI: How many siblings do you have?
DS: I got a younger brother who's 12 years old, in sixth grade. He could be pretty good. He'll be pretty good. And I got sister who's a freshman in high school and she plays volleyball and she's really good at volleyball, too.
PI: Talk about the athletic background in your family.
DS: Yeah, I've been playing basketball like…I kind of switched to only basketball in like fifth, sixth grade so I kind of got that pretty early and my sister, she used to play basketball a little bit but she didn't really like it.
So she went to play volleyball and she's pretty tall, so she got really good and she should get some offers here in a couple years…and then my little brother, he plays basketball, he plays football and he's pretty good at both. Whichever one he wants to do he can go do it.
PI: Did you play any other sports growing up?
DS: I played a little football, a little baseball, a little soccer, too. But right at fifth grade, I was kind of like “I'm gonna go focus on basketball.”
PI: What are your current measurements?
DS: I'm like 6’5”, I'm like 6’6” with shoes on. I weigh like 185, 190 [pounds] and then I don't know my wingspan. I haven’t measured that in a while, so I don't really know.
PI: For those who aren’t familiar with your game, what are your greatest strengths?
DS: Well yeah, like you said, obviously my shooting ability is very good, but as I've gotten older in the past three to four years, I think my whole game as a whole has been really good. Like my ball handling, I didn't used to be able to handle the ball like four, five years ago, but I got really good at handling the ball, [and became] really comfortable with it. I can play point guard if you want. And passing, I think I'm a very underrated passer. I find guys. I love to find guys. I love passing. I kind of like passing more than scoring, which is weird to say, but it just gets my teammates involved. Get everybody involved and then on the defensive end, I’ve [taken] multiple steps to get really good at defense: help side, rebounding, on-the-ball defense. So I kind of took strides in all aspects of my game, not just shooting, and I feel like I'm an all-around player.
PI: What do you feel you still need to improve on the most? What have you been working on?
DS: I mean, I'd say kind of just work on my body, getting bigger and stronger just so like whenever I go against the really big kids, not necessarily the guards — I think I'm fine with that — but like when I go against 6’10”, 6’11”, get switched on them, being able to hold my own in the paint and getting them out of the paint and playing good solid defense.
PI: Who do you model your game after and try to study on film?
DS: Ahh, for sure Tyler Herro. He's my favorite player in the league. Watched a lot of him just 'cause I feel like we play kind of similar, both kind of combo guards and just watching him the way [he shoots] his midrange 'cause I've really got into getting to my spot, getting into my midrange, pulling up and he does that a lot, so it's really neat to watch film on that and see how he does it. I watch a little bit of Klay Thompson, how he comes off screens, how he does all that, how quick he gets to his pocket. Those two really, but I mean I watched film on any guy, any kind of combo guard that knows how to get their shot off.
PI: Do you have a training regimen?
DS: Oh yeah. When I go to the gym, I kinda get a little ball handling in real quick and then always start close to the basket and then come out. Get a little form shooting, kind of like five minutes of that just to get hand-eye coordination all good. And then as you just keep going out, I just kind of focus on shooting good shots and in-game shots so that it translates to the game. When I'm shooting, I just kind of like whenever I'm in my zone shooting, I'm just feeling it. I mean I don't really think about it all too much, but I just shoot the ball how I’ve always have 'cause it's always worked for me.
PI: Who do you train with?
DS: I mean my shooting coach is kind of really my dad. Like whenever there's something wrong with my shot, he's kind of the one that notices the most, but for like ball handling and getting space, and like all the drills and stuff, there's a guy called Tyler Relph who a couple of my other kids like such as Liam [McNeeley] and RJ Jones, we all work out together with him in kind of a group setting. And then also Barrington Stevens, who's Tyler’s kind of right-hand guy. I do a lot of one-on-one with him and then to work on my body and stuff, there’s a guy named Eric D who works out RJ as well and I don't know if he works out Liam, but RJ… so like me and him kind of work on that side and I'll start going to him way more once the season ends.
PI: What’s your relationship like with other players in Texas?
DS: Yeah, I mean in Dallas it's such a…kind of everybody knows everybody just from the basketball perspective. So I mean like there's so much bouncing around as like we've been playing with each other since second, third, fourth grade. So as you get older, kids start to switch teams and you start playing with different kids and you just get to know everybody and also everybody plays in the biggest of the tournaments. So you kind of develop relationships off that, and then I'd say around like four or five years ago everybody started kind of immigrating to Tyler Relph and then like we've really started getting to know each other and all that just through that and just building relationships off that.
PI: Definitely see a lot of guys who support each other on and off the court.
DS: Yeah, for sure. Yeah it's very tight knit, like everybody supports everybody. Nobody really has any beef with anybody. It’s just everybody wants everybody to succeed, so it's kind of awesome to see that.
PI: What are you most excited about this summer with ProSkills?
DS: I mean I'm just excited to play, get out there and go hoop. That's what I love to do. I love to play basketball. I mean, obviously the goal is to win Peach Jam, but along the way just to have fun, kind of enjoy the last AAU season I would have just 'cause I mean, I just want to enjoy it 'cause I've already committed all that, committed to [Texas] Tech. So I mean I just want to go enjoy it and have a great time.
PI: Is there anyone in particular you look forward to playing with?
DS: I mean, we're trying to recruit a bunch of guys. The process is kind of like they didn't really have a team last year, so I'm kind of one of the first guys to commit to them. But yeah, I mean there's a couple kids like Jaylen Crocker-Johnson, trying to get Brandon Garrison to come down. So like there's a couple of kids that I really want to go recruit just to play with them in AAU, just ‘cause I love playing with them.
PI: By the way, congratulations on your commitment! What was the Texas Tech’s coaching staff reaction when you told them?
DS: They were very excited. I mean Coach Williams, Coach Peery, Coach Adams were all there when it happened. So they were hyped about it and it was just a really cool feeling like you could tell they really wanted me just ‘cause how they reacted off that. And I mean, I love those guys, man.
PI: What are you most looking forward to about Texas Tech?
DS: I mean, it's just a great city, a bunch of great fans. So I mean get to know, go build relationships, meet a couple new friends, so all that stuff. But I mean, I really just can't wait for the basketball portion just 'cause it's so much fun.
PI: What can Texas Tech fans expect from you on the court?
DS: I mean they can expect a hard worker. I'm gonna go work every day, go get better, and we're gonna win when I'm there. I can promise you that. That's what I'm going there to do is to go win, go win a bunch of games, go win a bunch of Big 12 Championships, go try to win a national championship. I mean, that's really what I want to bring to them when I go there and I just can't wait to play in front of all the fans. Just 'cause I mean, they're crazy and I love them all.
PI: What are your biggest interests outside of basketball?
DS: It would have been video games a couple years ago, but kind of eased up on that, but I mean, I just like hanging with my family and my friends — just kind of just chilling with them because it's always fun.
PI: Who are your favorite music artists?
DS: Ohh, I have to go with Jack Harlow. I've got to go a little out of the ordinary, can't give the same answer every time (laughs). I gotta give Jack Harlow some love.
PI: If you were stuck forever on a deserted island and had all the food, water, and shelter you needed — what three personal items would you bring?
DS: Ohh, let's see…three…oh, this is hard. I think I'd bring a basketball. I mean, hopefully, but it’s a desert island, so there wouldn’t be a court. Hmm…this is a hard one. I mean, I think I’d just bring three people to be honest with you. Just I mean, probably my little bro. Little bro, I’d bring my sister and then probably just one of my friends, to be honest.
PI: You have one hashtag to describe yourself. What is it?
DS: Right now we're going #WreckEm just 'cause Texas Tech baby.
PI: If you woke up tomorrow to see a fortune in your bank account, what would be your first purchase?
DS: Umm, I'd go purchase…I mean, if this is a big amount of money, probably go get a house just to go see what's that life about, probably.
PI: If you weren’t pursuing a career as a professional hooper, what do you think you would choose to do?
DS: I'll probably go to college just you know, like typical. Probably go into my dad’s business just 'cause he's a tight knit family over there, so I'll probably go do that, take that route.
PI: What type of family business is it?
DS: I always forget what he does. It has something to do with…like it's a family office just kind of going to find companies, going to buy them, and selling them for more. So kind of go learn the ropes of that after college and then take that over.
PI: What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
DS: “Just be you.” I mean from my dad and then one of my [friends] De’Vion Harmon, who goes to Oregon. That’s kind of his saying “just be you” and I live by that. Just like go be yourself, go do what you want to do.
PI: Who’s someone you really look up to?
DS: Definitely my dad, just 'cause how he's very successful and just how he's like also in the basketball scene — how he's been respected and all that. Probably my dad and then as a hooper, I mean, probably De’Vion Harmon as well. He's like my big brother. He's like my second brother, so probably those two.
PI: What’s your biggest pet peeve?
DS: To be honest, I don't really have one. People always ask me that question. I could never think of one. I kind of just let it flow, whatever. Doesn’t matter to me.
PI: How would you define the word ‘success?’
DS: I’d say success is wherever you find happiness. If you're happy I feel like you're successful in life in any scenario.
PI: Where do you see yourself in five years?
DS: I mean, the plan is to be in the NBA by that point just because college four years or maybe the end of the college career, kind of looking [at] what to do from the professional level, but I wanna hoop as long as I can.
PI: Name four words that best describe you.
DS: Let’s see. I’d say hardworking, loyal, honest, and hooper.
PI: At the end of the day, what do you hope to be remembered for?
DS: As a player, I just hope to be remembered as someone who gave it his all, was always on the court, always a winner to some level. Then off the court, I just wanna be remembered as loving, caring, and I mean hard worker as well. Just kind of those couple things.