Tag:Ohio State
Posted on: January 20, 2012 10:34 am
 

Amile Jefferson could be on verge of decision

By Jeff Borzello

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – For the past couple of months, it has seemed like Amile Jefferson was on the verge of making a decision.

This time, he might really mean it.

“It’s getting close,” Jefferson said over the weekend. “I’m hoping it’s soon. It’s day-to-day. We’re going to sit down and give each coach one more call.”

Jefferson, a 6-foot-9 forward from Friends Central (Pa.), is ranked No. 13 in CBSSports.com’s Top 100. He is considering five schools heading into the home stretch: Villanova, Ohio State, North Carolina State, Kentucky and Duke.

“There’s a lot of pressure,” Jefferson said. “You get the pressure from fans. There’s no more courting. People want you to make a decision.”

Duke is one of the schools getting plenty of attention with Jefferson the past few weeks. Mike Krzyzewski turned up the heat on him recently, becoming a major player in his recruitment after sniffing around for a while.

The Blue Devils are squarely in the mix.

“Duke was always a school I had interest in,” Jefferson said. “I’ve been talking to Coach K. You go there, you know you have a chance to compete for national championships and play with some of the best players in the country.”

Before Duke was one of the finalists, Jefferson had taken official visits to Villanova, Ohio State, NC State and Kentucky – but not to Duke. In fact, he hasn’t seen the Durham campus since his sophomore year.

However, it doesn’t look like that will hurt the Blue Devils’ chances.

“I don’t think so,” Jefferson said. “I’ve seen a lot and I talk to coach K and coach [Chris] Collins a lot.”

Is Duke the new favorite? We’ll see by the end of the month – maybe.

Photo: Adidas Nations

Posted on: January 18, 2012 10:21 am
 

Julius Randle begins taking unofficial visits

By Jeff Borzello

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Julius Randle is still about a year from making his college decision, but that hasn’t stopped him from taking steps in the recruiting process.

Earlier this month, the No. 3-ranked prospect in 2013 spent some time on Tobacco Road, visiting North Carolina, North Carolina State and Duke.

“They’re three programs that have great tradition,” Randle said. “It was just an honor to visit. It was a lot of fun.”

Randle, a 6-foot-8 power forward from Prestonwood Christian (Texas), is not tipping his hand as to which visit was the best – or to which specific schools are recruiting him.

“I don’t have a list,” he said. “If you name a team, they’re probably recruiting me.”

However, Randle did say he wants to take unofficial visits to Texas and Kentucky in the near future.

“I like the versatility of the players they have,” he said.

In addition to the aforementioned five schools, Ohio State, Kansas, Baylor are also among the colleges heavily pursuing Randle. He won’t make a decision until after he takes his five official visits, which will happen next fall.

While academics rank high on the priority list for Randle, coaching style is also going to be a major factor when he eventually makes a decision.

“A coach that will push me,” he said. “He’s not going to always tell me what I want to hear, but what I need to hear. Someone that will make me the best player I can be.”

Photo: Bleacher Report 

Posted on: January 16, 2012 1:40 pm
Edited on: January 16, 2012 1:45 pm
 

Connecticut joins race for Tony Parker



By
Jeff Borzello

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – It seems every time Tony Parker discusses his recruitment, another school enters the picture.

This time, it’s Connecticut.

“[Jim] Calhoun called me recently,” Parker said after his team’s loss to St. Anthony (N.J.) at the Hoop Hall Classic. “I’ll sit down with my dad. They’re one of his favorite schools.”

Parker, a 6-foot-8 big man from Miller Grove (Ga.), is one of the top uncommitted players left in the class of 2012. He still has Kentucky, Duke, UCLA, Ohio State and Memphis on his list, with Kansas showing recent interest.

Parker said he plans to make a decision during the spring.

“It’s getting closer, it’s starting to get hectic,” he said. “But I don’t really feel any pressure.”

Parker struggled against the swarming defense of St. Anthony on Monday, finishing with just six points and three rebounds. Duke and Kentucky had three representatives each to watch Parker, with Mike Kryzewski and Jim Calhoun both in attendance. Kevin Ollie from Connecticut also took in the game.

Parker enjoys the eyeballs watching him.

“The light is on me,” he said. “I don’t feel any added pressure because if I choose them, I’m going to play in front of them everyday. It’s kind of fun.”

Kentucky recently began showing more interest in Parker, and the Wildcats are in the mix for his final official visit. The Wildcats have already secured a commitment from Alex Poythress, Parker’s friend and AAU teammate on the Georgia Stars.

Poythress has been helping Kentucky recruit Parker.

“Their interest is good,” Parker said. “I get the Kentucky calls everyday from [Poythress], making sure I’m watching the game. It’s a great place.”

Although several teams are trying to jump into the process late in the game, Ohio State is one of the programs that have been involved since the start. Assistant coach Drew Dickerson represented the Buckeyes on Monday.

If Jared Sullinger leaves early, Parker would be the ideal replacement.

“They’re a great program,” he said. “They do a lot with their bigs, which really works in my favor. They really recruit good around their bigs. I have a deep relationship with the coaching staff.”

Parker plans to take his final official visit before making a decision. He said Kentucky, Kansas and Connecticut are all in the mix for it, but it will likely come down to Kentucky or Connecticut for his last trip.

Unless another team enters the picture, of course.

Photo: Five Star Basketball 

Posted on: December 14, 2011 2:15 pm
Edited on: December 14, 2011 2:15 pm
 

Slimmer BeeJay Anya holds his own down low

By Jeff Borzello

HYATTSVILLE, Md. – When the National High School Hoops Festival schedule came out, many people look at DeMatha vs. Jamesville-Dewitt.

BeeJay Anya vs. DaJuan Coleman. Two big guys pushing 300 lbs. going at it in the paint.

Then something happened. Anya lost 40 lbs. in the past few months and is looking considerably slimmer. He was still able to hold his own against the Syracuse-bound Coleman, bodying him up in the paint and using his length to make up for the height disadvantage.  

“I think he came out and played well and it was a good showing for both of us,” Anya said.

Anya was certainly more mobile and active than he was in the summer, getting open in the post and showing off a variety of post moves. His rebounding is still a huge asset at both ends of the floor.

His conditioning has helped in all facets of his game.

“Last year, that’s what was holding me back from being a better player,” Anya said. “I am more agile and athletic than I was last year.”

Anya isn’t focusing on his recruitment, but he has a long list of schools pursuing him. Syracuse, Texas, Kansas, Louisville, Maryland, Georgetown, Indiana, Ohio State, North Carolina State, Florida and Georgia Tech have all extended offers to the 2013 big man.

Anya ranks No. 30 in CBSSports.com’s Top 100.

Photo: National Recruiting Spotlight

Posted on: October 24, 2011 5:22 pm
Edited on: October 24, 2011 11:04 pm
 

Big man, big recruit: Coleman makes pick Tuesday

By Jeff Borzello

The question surrounding DaJuan Coleman throughout his entire recruitment centered around Syracuse.

After all, the five-star big man attends Jamesville-Dewitt (N.Y.) near Syracuse and has been to the upstate New York campus on numerous occasions. Moreover, his former high school teammate, Brandon Triche, is currently a junior guard for the Orange.

With that said, his decision process has lasted far longer than expected -- is that a sign that Syracuse has been passed in Coleman's mind?

We will all find out on Tuesday afternoon, as Coleman will announce his commitment at a 2:30 p.m. press conference at his high school.

Along with Syracuse, the other schools in the running are Ohio State and Kentucky.

Coleman visited Kentucky for its Big Blue Madness, and the Wildcats have made up plenty of ground in this recruitment. In the summer, Coleman's AAU coach told me that Kentucky was "1A" in the race.

He has also taken a visit to Ohio State, and he has said he would like to be a Jared Sullinger-type player for the Buckeyes.

Coleman, a 6-foot-9 big man, is ranked No. 15 in CBSSports.com's Top 100. At one point, he was in the running for the top spot in the class but he has slipped some over the past year. Despite that, his physical prowess and soft touch around the rim make him very difficult to stop down low. He uses his body well and can grab rebounds consistently. If he tones his body and gets in better shape, Coleman has the potential to be a dominant force in college.

Which college will that be? We'll find out in less than 24 hours.

Photo via Lonnie Webb 
Posted on: October 12, 2011 1:32 am
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Posted on: September 13, 2011 1:32 pm
 

Chris Walker going through the process

By Jeff Borzello

While most of the focus right now is on the recruitments of players in the class of 2012, several juniors are making their way through the process as well.

Chris Walker is one of those 2013 prospects ramping up their recruitment this fall, and sources have indicated that people in his circle could be pushing for a decision sooner rather than later.

“It all depends on how close me and the coaches get,” Walker said on Tuesday. “Me meeting all the staffs and stuff like that.”

The 6-foot-10 Holmes County (Fla.) product did add that he could make a decision soon, though.

Right now, there are five schools standing out for his services: Florida, Florida State, Kentucky, Ohio State and Kansas.

“Not a final five yet,” Walker said. “I got interest still in other programs.”

Alabama, Louisville, Baylor, Tennessee, Virginia Tech, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Connecticut, Texas, Texas Tech and others have also offered the power forward.

Walker tripped to Florida recently, and said it was great. He will also be at Florida State this weekend on an unofficial visit.

One interesting development in his visit schedule is midnight madness. Originally, he was planning to be a part of Kentucky’s Big Blue Madness. That has changed, though.

“I’m not going to Kentucky madness because they’re going to be more worried about signing 2012 people,” Walker said. “So I think I’m going to Kansas [Midnight Madness].”

Walker has improved drastically over the past year. His ability to run the floor and make plays in transition is exceptional for someone his size. Walker can face-up and score with short jumpers or drives to the rim. At the other end, he makes an impact with blocks and rebounds because of his length and athleticism.

He ranks No. 5 in CBSSports.com’s Top 100.

Photo: UKSportsInfo.com

Posted on: September 7, 2011 11:39 am
Edited on: September 7, 2011 11:42 am
 

Danuel House down to six, sets up in-home visits

INTERESTED TEAMS:



By Jeff Borzello

Danuel House entered Memorial Day Weekend with just two offers, but racked up nearly 40 after impressive play during May, June and July.

Coming out of the summer, House cut down his list to six: Houston, Baylor, Georgetown, Ohio State, Texas and Kansas.

Starting Friday and ending September 13, at least five of the schools will come through for visits with House, according to Texas Pro coach Marland Lowe. One has not been confirmed yet.

“Only in-home visits,” Lowe said.

While other top prospects are taking official visits to their final schools, House is unable to go on trips due to his lack of a standardized test score. He plans on taking the test in October.

“Not really concerned about the test,” Lowe said. “He has a 3.0 GPA.”

There is no specific timetable for a decision, and House has not decided whether he will decide before he is allowed to take official visits, or simply get it done after the in-homes.

“It will depend on how the home visits go,” Lowe said.

House is a 6-foot-6 small forward from Hightower (Tex.) who uses his athleticism and aggressiveness to make plays at the rim. He runs the floor tremendously well and is very difficult to stop in transition. House handles the ball fairly well, and his outside shot is getting more consistent. Due to his length and leaping ability, he has a solid defender and rebounder.

He ranks No. 37 in CBSSports.com's Top 100.

Photo: Fort Bend Sun




 
 
 
 
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