EYBL Notebook: Five-star Jaquan Lyle being wooed by final six

Jaquan Lyle is very difficult for opposing guards to defend off the dribble. (Nike)
Jaquan Lyle is very difficult for opposing guards to defend off the dribble. (Nike)

HAMPTON, Va. -- As the AAU season picks up for Jaquan Lyle, the five-star junior is also starting to heat up in his recruitment.

Before playing in Los Angeles last weekend, he took an unofficial visit to UCLA to check out what the Bruins had to offer. After an EYBL-opening weekend in California, five head coaches came through for visits this week: Billy Donovan (Florida), Cuonzo Martin (Tennessee), Thad Matta (Ohio State), Rick Pitino (Louisville) and Tom Crean (Indiana).

Lyle, a 6-foot-5 guard from Bosse (Ind.), is down to six schools: Louisville, Indiana, Ohio State, Florida, Tennessee and Illinois.

“I’m going to take my time. And whenever I think I’m ready to make a decision, then that’s what I’m going to do,” he said on Friday.

While Lyle has trimmed his list, he’s not close to making a final decision on his destination. The junior plans to take his SAT in early June and then begin to take his official visits.

He’s not choosing a school until he makes trips to the schools.

“I’m going to use all five official visits,” Lyle said. “I’m going to take official visits to five out of those six [finalists].”

Ranked No. 14 in the 247 Sports Composite Rankings, Lyle is a handful for opposing guards to defend. He can handle the ball like a point guard and gets to the rim whenever he wants. Lyle has put on some strength and weight, enabling him to finish more effectively in traffic. On Friday, he was able to get into the lane and create open looks for himself and teammates off the bounce.

All six schools on his final list are in hot pursuit, but he’s not tipping his hand.

“If I think it’s the best decision for myself and for my basketball career and getting me further in life, that’s the decision I’m going to make,” Lyle said.

Six standouts from Friday

Rashad Vaughn, 2014, Wisconsin Playground Elite: Vaughn might be the best pure scoring guard in the junior class, and his full offensive arsenal was on display on Friday evening. His outside shot wasn’t falling consistently, but he got to the rim and finished and distributed. Finished with 22 points and six assists.

Tyus Jones, 2014, Howard Pulley: Jones finished with 28 points and eight assists, but it wasn’t easy. He was able to get to the rim at will, but the Texas Titans tried to be physical with him. He still managed to get open looks and helped Pulley eke out a win.

Sandy Cohen, 2014, Wisconsin Playground Elite: This is a player to watch. Cohen is 6-foot-6 and can play point guard, facilitating offense for his teammates. He didn’t make a shot from the field on Friday but was able to rack up seven assists. Also showed athleticism.

D.J. Hogg, 2015, Texas Titans: Hogg is going to be in high demand if he continues to play like he did on Friday night. At 6-foot-7, he is a matchup problem on the perimeter due to his shooting ability. Hogg is a knockdown perimeter shooter and spreads the defense.

Alex Robinson, 2014, Texas Titans: Robinson didn’t back down at all from his matchup with Tyus Jones. After a slow start, one could argue that Robinson outplayed Jones in the second half. He controlled tempo and was able to get points in different ways.

Zach McCormick and Justin Johnson, 2014, Travelers Basketball: The Travelers didn’t have anyone as talented as Rashad Vaughn, but McCormick got off to a hot start and Johnson was solid throughout the game. McCormick showed deep range and had 18 points, while Johnson was a force down low for 16 points and 16 boards. 

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