He wants a game with Obama. / Andy Lyons, Getty Images
She has actually played him. / John Albright, Icon SMI/Corbis
Hometown: Raleigh, N.C.
Hoops highlights: Was ranked No. 1 high school player in the country by Rivals.com.
Favorite actors: Mike Epps and Chris Tucker
Musical taste: Rap. Lil Wayne and R. Kelly.
Height: 6 feet
Hometown: Lawrenceville, Ga.
Hoops highlights: Won national championship for UConn and John R. Wooden Award for top female player in the country in 2009. Her team went undefeated in the same year.
Favorite actor: Denzel Washington
Musical taste: Christian R&B and rap. Lecrae, Mary Mary and Canton Jones.
He’s a freshman who could be a one-and-done -- a guy so talented that he may only play this season before turning pro. And he wants a national championship ring before he leaves.
She’s a third-year veteran who already has earned her ring. But she wants another.
He has talked to President Obama on the phone and wants an invite to the White House for a pickup game with him. She has been to the White House with her championship team and already has played against the president. Well, in a shortened game of H-O-R-S-E, at least.
With this kind of cred, who better than these two star hoopsters -- Kentucky guard John Wall and Connecticut forward Maya Moore -- for our annual March Madness one-on-one? As it turns out, they’re also fans of each other. So they were happy to take a break from school and conference play to let us know how they’ve been enjoying their journey to the Big Dance, which kicks off on March 16 for the men and March 20 for the women.
Have you checked out each other's games?
Maya: Sure! I just love John’s energy and the passion that he plays with. It’s pretty hard to watch John play and not get excited. He’s not afraid to make those amazing plays.
John: I’ve seen Maya play, too. I can learn stuff from her even though she’s “a girl.” I like the way she lets the game come to her, not forcing the issue. That’s something I’m trying to do.
Have any superstitions or traditions?
John: I have to wear a pair of Hanes socks under my game socks. There are also two songs I listen to before every game: R. Kelly’s The World’s Greatest and I Wish.
Do either of you have any musical aspirations?
John: I always wished I could sing. I try to sing in the shower, but that doesn’t work.
Maya: Shower steam helps your voice sound better. We sing all the time on our team. We’re a basketball music group. For me, it’s about the drums. I’ve been doing that as a hobby since I was, like, 10.
What would be the best meal to celebrate a title?
Maya: My mama’s homemade macaroni and cheese casserole.
John: Crab legs and shrimp.
John, I'm going to let you interview Maya now. One question. Go!
John: You know anything about my teammate, DeMarcus Cousins?
Maya: Besides watching you guys play? No. Why?
John: I think he’s got a little crush on you.
Maya: Thanks! But I’m not looking.