Amile Jefferson to Wait Until February; Duke Latest to Call
Amile Jefferson will hold off on announcing his college choice until after his season ends, which could be early next week.
“He’s trying to finish up these last few high school games and then he’s going to make a decision,” Malcolm Musgrove, Jefferson’s father, told SNY.tv Monday evening.
“He has three more games and then the playoffs. His season could be over next Tuesday.”
SNY.tv reported that a source close to Jefferson’s recruitment said the 6-foot-7 Philly Friends Central forward would likely choose between Duke or N.C. State, and that he was leaning “60/40” to Duke.
Musgrove said no schools had been eliminated, which would mean Kentucky, Villanova, UConn and Ohio State are still alive.
“He still has the same schools,” Musgrove said. “He’s still talking to the coaches weekly so he hasn’t eliminated any of the schools he has. So they’re still in the mix and he’s talking to them weekly.”
Asked which school Jefferson had spoken to most recently, Musgrove said Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski called last night (Sunday).
“I talked to Duke last night,” Musgrove said. “[Coach K] talked a lot about what he sees and they’re trying to understand if he can understand their system and how he would play in their system.
“They have bigs and guards and they don’t have as many kids that are versatile enough to play a small forward and a big forward.”
Longtime New York recruiting expert Tom Konchalski said he could see Jefferson fitting in well at Duke.
“When you look at their roster, they probably do need some wings,” he said. “He’s not really a wing yet. He’s a wing in training. I think eventually he’ll be a three man. I don’t think he’s three man right now.
“His attractiveness to them is the fact that he’s got a very high basketball IQ. He’s not an extra-terrestrial athlete but he’s a guy who knows how to play, is very efficient. He plays very much of the team game.
“He doesn’t score a zillion points. He lets the game come to him and is a good team player with a high IQ, and that’s why I think he would fit into a program like that.”
Konchalski said Jefferson would need to “flesh out his perimeter skills if he wants to be a wing player.”
“Right now he’s more of a four/three,” he added. “He’s not the kind of athlete who’s a one-and-done or a two-and-done but he could be a very good player and a major contributor by the time he’s finished.”
Of course, he’s not a done deal to Duke yet.
Musgrove said his son spoke to N.C. State coach Mark Gottfried “a few days ago” and also speaks with Kentucky coach John Calipari.
Jefferson is in the mix to be a McDonald’s All-American and is anxiously awaiting the announcement of the team Feb. 7.
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Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.