JaQuan Lyle Postpones Kansas Visit; West Virginia, Oklahoma State Making Pushes
By CHIP MILLERSpecial to ZAGSBLOGPADUCAH, Ky. — Huntington (W.V.) Prep combo guard JaQuan Lyle has postponed his official visit to Kansas this weekend due to a family situation.
“No, I’m not going to go,” Lyle told SNY.tv. “My mom’s not going to be able to go. One of my nephews was born a couple of months early and he gets out of the hospital this weekend.
“I’m actually leaving [Thursday night] to go back home for that. We have a special weekend, so I’m not going to be able to make it.”
Lyle made the comments Thursday night after going for 23 points on 7-for-18 shooting as Huntington Prep beat Our Savior New American, 68-66. He hit two clutch foul shots in the final 2.1 seconds and finished 9-for-9 from the line.
As for recruiting, Lyle expressed that he still has all five official visits remaining. Asked if he planned on utilizing them prior to a decision, he said:
“I don’t know yet. If I get to a place and fall in love, I may wait a week and if my heart still feels good [about the school], then I’m going to make a decision, but I don’t really know.”
As far as rescheduling his Kansas trip. Lyle says there’s no current timeline, but that Kansas is on his list to receive a visit.
“Pretty much every one of our weekends are tied up until March, so we won’t have officials until March,” he said.
Lyle told SNY.tv he has no official list, but that Kansas, Oregon, West Virginia and Memphis are coming at him the hardest right now.
“I haven’t taken any [officials],” he said. “Just to Memphis and UConn unofficially.”
Lyle said West Virginia — where Huntington Prep is located — is coming hard.
“West Virginia is coming after me real hard right now,” Lyle said. “Full force, I mean [head coach Bob] Huggins is coming in, assistant coach [Larry] Harrison is coming in, West Virginia is coming hard.”
But West Virginia isn’t the only name trying to stay in the hunt for Lyle.
Oklahoma State head man Travis Ford called and wants him to come for an official visit.
“I just talked to Coach Ford from OSU sometime last week,” Lyle said. “They want me to come down on an official, too, and I just want to make the best opportunity for myself.”
He added: “That’s a good opportunity for me to come in and play right away with them losing Marcus Smart, so that’s just something I’ve got to think about.”
As far as Ford’s message to Lyle.
“He likes me because I’m a big guard,” he said. “He compared me to Marcus Smart. He says he can develop me to be the best player I can be. Eventually I want to go to the NBA and I saw what he did with Marcus Smart.”
Lyle said he hasn’t heard at all from Kentucky or Louisville and that Indiana is out.
“Indiana is off my list completely,” he said.
Most of the schools see him as a combo guard.
“A lot of schools are looking at me as a combo more,” Lyle said. “Ball handling that can take the pressure off their guards. So a lot of schools are talking combo; some schools are talking just straight one. It all depends on the position I’m in.”
With the late signing period coming up in April, Lyle said he had no timetable for a commitment, but expects to have a decision made prior to then.
Still, that that doesn’t mean he’s not willing to push it into summer if needed.
“I will be done before late signing period,” he said. “If I get my official visits in and I feel like I get to the right place, then I’ll make a decision. But if I still don’t know where I want to go by the late signing period then it may roll into summer.”
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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.