Notre Dame men's basketball: What gives Atkins all that energy?
Eric Atkins can play so many minutes game after game and almost as
many answers arise.
His head coach believes it might be genetics. How else could Atkins
routinely pound down nothing more than a bag of potato chips and chase
it with a Mountain Dew before playing for hours on the AAU circuit
back home in Columbia, Md.?
Classmate and teammate Alex Dragicevich believes it's because the
20-year-old Atkins is in such good shape, even if he might be "a
little bit of a goofy guy."
Senior and fellow captain Scott Martin insists a "squirrely" body
structure (6-foot-1, 182 pounds) allows Atkins to "run for 40 minutes
straight up and down and he's not going to get tired."
It might stem from Atkins' rituals. They include massages on off days,
trips to the Jacuzzi for an hour on game days and guzzling apple juice
and gobbling Gummy Bears, something he started doing in high school,
sometime before tip-off.
Whatever the reason, Atkins paid little attention as the minutes piled
up this season. He averaged 39.4 in 18 Big East games, which basically