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.
Josiah James aiming to win gold with USA Basketball, then plans to cut college list
By ADAM ZAGORIAST. CATHARINES, ONTARIO — Josiah James has a busy few weeks ahead.
The 6-foot-5 point guard from Charleston (S.C.) Porter-Gaud School is aiming to win a gold medal this weekend with the USA at the FIBA Americas U18 Championship here and then he plans to focus on recruiting going forward.
“It would mean the world to me [to win gold],” said James, who went for 8 points, 5 rebounds and 3 assists as the USA manhandled Ecuador, 132-55, to advance to a semifinal showing with Argentina. “It would definitely be a dream come true.
“That’s our mindset right now,” he added. “Those first few games were just getting us prepared for the last game that we’ll hopefully play for the gold medal and that’s the ultimate goal for us.
James is playing alongside a loaded group of guards that includes Cole Anthony, Quentin Grimes, Coby White, Ayo Dosunmu. Kentucky-bound guard Tyrese Maxey (ankle) is injured and may be done for the event.
“It’s a dream come true for me,” James said. “I’ve dreamed of this as a child and for it to come true, it’s a dream come true. This team is made up of a great group of guys. We get along on and off the court. It’s definitely fun playing and competing with them in practice and the real games.”
On the recruiting front, James plans to narrow his list in the coming weeks.
He listed in-state schools South Carolina and Clemson among those working the hardest, along with Duke, Florida, Florida State, Virginia and Virginia Tech.
“Definitely after USA Basketball, I’ll cut it to probably about eight or nine and I’ll probably keep that private,” he said. “And once I get down to five I’ll publish that probably.”
Wherever he goes, James plans to bring a diverse skill set.
“Whatever they need me to do, I’m a versatile player,” he said. “I can handle the ball, I can shoot the ball, I can play defense. I can guard 1 through 4 at the college llevel and that’s definitely what I’m working on day in and day out, but I’ll defiintely do whatever they need me to do.”
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Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
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.