When Ishmail Wainright made the move from Raytown South (Mo.) to Montrose Christian (Md.), a lot of things changed.
Wainright was suddenly nearly 1,000 miles from home, with new friends, new teammates, new style of play and more pressure. But the biggest difference for Wainright?
“The weather,” he said. “It rains too much.”
Not surprisingly, Wainright is extremely happy with his decision to leave home and go to the vaunted private school near Washington D.C.
“This was one of the best moves by far,” he said. “The only move, really. It’s a great education.”
Although the season has not yet started, Wainright has already noticed a difference in the attendance at the preseason workouts. The door leading to the gym is a revolving door of high-major head coaches and some of the best recruiters in the country.
UCLA, Texas, Kansas State, Alabama, Providence, Virginia Tech, Syracuse, UMKC, Georgetown, Maryland, Villanova have all stopped by. St. John’s, Texas A&M, Baylor and Missouri were there on Wednesday. Louisville is expected to come soon, while Memphis set up a date to check out Wainright as well.
“I didn’t know it was going to be like this,” Wainright said. “I was just thinking in my head, ‘I don’t know who is going to see me, I don’t know who likes my game.’
“When I got there, coach [Stu] Vetter sat me down and said, ‘Now you know you will be hearing from coaches that you’ve never heard from, right?’ I just giggled. I thought he was playing, but it was for real.”
Wainright has had an interesting recruitment so far. He committed to Missouri in May, becoming new head coach Frank Haith’s first big-time recruit since taking over the Tigers. In late June, though, but suddenly decommitted and reopened his process.
After a few underwhelming performances with Memphis YOMCA on the Nike AAU circuit in the spring, Wainright won back his reputation with the KC 76ers in Las Vegas. He led his team to a surprising Fab 48 title, outplaying No. 1 prospect Jabari Parker in a head-to-head battle.
Wainright currently holds offers from Syracuse, Baylor, Missouri, Kansas, Kansas State, Texas, Texas A&M, Colorado, St. John’s, UMKC, Florida, Nebraska and Louisville.
While he doesn’t have any specific visits planned, he wants to attend Louisville’s Midnight Madness festivities.
“I don’t have [a favorite] right now,” Wainright said.
Wainright, a 6-foot-5 small forward, is ranked as a five-star prospect in CBSSports.com’s Top 100 rankings for 2013. He is No. 17 in the country.