Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
Duke, Kansas Remain Viable Options for Myles Turner; Will Visit Texas Last, Possible Visit to Kentucky
Duke and Kansas both remain viable options for uncommitted 2014 McDonald’s and Jordan Brand All-American Myles Turner despite the fact that both already have committed bigs in this class.
The 6-foot-11 Turner out of Euless (TX) Trinity has now taken officials to those two along with Ohio State and Oklahoma State, and will take his last visit to Texas, David Turner told SNY.tv. It’s possible he could also take an unofficial to Kentucky.
The Duke visit this past weekend for the North Carolina game went extremely well.
“The Duke visit was incredible, man,” David said. “Meeting Coach K, hearing his plan for Myles and knowing that he definitely has a vision for how it would work with him and [Jahlil] Okafor and Justise [Winslow] and Tyus [Jones] and all them playing together, and whoever comes back.
“We all know Jabari [Parker]’s not coming back, he’s just too good of a player.”
Asked if Coach K told him that, David said, “No, that’s me saying that. He’s the best player in college basketball without a doubt. Hands down.”
Even though they already have Okafor in the fold, Turner could coexist with the Chicago big man.
“Nobody has a position and that’s how Coach K plays,” David said. “I mean, you just play basketball. Of course he’ll utilize their strengths but he didn’t pidgeon-hole anybody. He didn’t designate anything for anybody, but he definitely has a plan for them playing together.”
Asked if they were seriously considering Duke, David said: “Absolutely, we wouldn’t have gone on the visit if we weren’t. I mean, every visit we take we’re serious. We’re not just wasting the guys’ time.”
Turner and his father visited Kansas last Wednesday prior to the Duke visit.
“Kansas was a great visit,” David said. “Myles had a great visit there.”
Like Duke, Kansas has a pledge from a big man in Naismith High School Player of the Year Cliff Alexander.
“Coach [Bill] Self and Coach [Norm] Roberts, just watching them run their practices I could see where Myles would fit into the system,” David said. “They just had it going. If Joel Embiid goes to the NBA, I could see where Myles would plug right into where he would be. If Joel Embiid stays, I could see where they could help each other get better.
“The same thing with Duke. I could see where Jahlil and Myles in practice could help each other get better. Myles has great opportunities in front of him.”
David said the last visit would be to in-state school Texas, but no date is set.
“Exactly,” he said. “That’s going to be our last visit. We haven’t set a date yet. We did promise them. They’ve been on us for a long time. They’re the hometown school, we promised them the last visit.”
They could also visit Kentucky, even though the Wildcats have Trey Lyles and Karl-Anthony Towns in their class, and Dakari Johnson and Marcus Lee likely returning.
“We’re going to try to get an unofficial,” he said. “We only have one official left, so we’re still trying to work that out.”
Turner will be very busy in April with the McDonald’s and Jordan Games, as well as the Nike Hoop Summit. He will play with and against recruits from Duke, Kansas and Kentucky at those events, and will use those games to evaluate what it’s like playing with some of those players.
“Myles has a very busy April so we’re trying to get it done a soon as possible,” David said of a decision.
“We’re very blessed to be in this position. It’s overwhelming at times, but it beats the alternative.”
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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.