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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.
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Thursday / October 28.
  • Dante ExumBy JOSH NEWMAN
    Special to ZAGSBLOG

    Eligible for the 2014 NBA Draft, 18-year old Australian sensation Dante Exum has yet to decide on whether to pursue a professional career or attend college for at least one year beginning in the fall of 2014. The one thing he does know is that if he does attend college, it will not be this fall.

    The fact that Exum graduates from the Australian Institute of Sport in October has led to speculation that he would enroll in school in December, play the second semester, then declare for the NBA Draft. Exum, who is currently slotted as the No. 3 overall pick in the 2014 draft by DraftExpress, put that notion to rest in an interview with ESPN.com’s Jeff Goodman on Wednesday.

    “Schools have been saying I can start in early December and play this season,” Exum told Goodman. “But if college is the option, I’ll stay in Australia, do workouts with the national team and then go to college next August. Playing this season in college is not an option.”

    Dominic Magee, a 6-foot-3 point guard from Harvey (LA) Helen Cox, is the latest floor general whom Kentucky is focusing on.

    Magee told SNY.tv by text that he’s “planning on” speaking with Kentucky coach John Calipari “hopefully this week.”

    Kentucky has already missed out on Emmanuel Mudiay (SMU) and could lose Tyus Jones to Duke.  Josh Perkins, who never received a Kentucky offer, pledged to Gonzaga last weekend. And Tyler Ulis is being courted by Michigan State, among others.

    Magee is now considering Kentucky along with Memphis, LSU, Kansas State and Oklahoma State. His AAU coach, Titus Randle of Louisiana Future, told SNY.tv by phone that Magee has visits planned to Memphis and LSU next month. He is also slated to take the ACT Sept 21.

    Paschal Chukwu, the 7-foot-1 center from Fairfield (CT) Prep, will likely choose between Providence and St. Joe’s and a decision could come soon, sources told SNY.tv.

    UConn, Boston College, Georgetown, N.C. State and Maryland have also been involved in his recruitment.

    Chukwu, who calls to mind a young Hasheem Thabeet or Dikembe Mutombo, averaged 13.7 points, 12.1 rebounds and 6.8 blocks per game last season at Fairfield Prep. He and his family have been very protective of information in the recruiting process.

    Leo Redgate, the Fairfield Prep coach, was not immediately available for comment.

    Jeff Newberry of New Mexico Junior College is one of the top junior college guards in the nation. An Atlanta native, he will be contributing periodically to ZAGSBLOG this year. Here’s his first entry.

    Hey, everyone and all supporters, what’s going on?

    Point Guard Jeff Newberry of New Mexico Junior College checking in. Just wanted to give some fans and supporters a little of my background and information on what schools are recruiting me and have offered at this point.

    Given Duke’s reputation for keeping players in school for more than one year, it qualifies as news when Coach K tells someone he’s a one-and-done.

    Such is apparently the case with 6-foot-11 Texas big man Myles Turner, who wrote this in his USA Today blog:

    “I also like how Coach K talks to me.

    “He handles me like I’m a pro. He says things like: ‘Myles you’re a pro and you need to carry yourself that way. You don’t need to worry about all of this media, outside stuff you need to start training your mind now. Hopefully you’ll only be in college for a year and head off to the NBA because I can see you there.’

    Team Scan wing Terry Larrier enjoyed his visit to UConn on Tuesday and has more visits upcoming.

    “The visit was great,” Team Scan coach Terrance “Munch” Williams told SNY.tv. “The entire staff was able to make sure that Terry knew as much as possible about  UConn. They were able to design a plan for him both in the classroom and on the court.

    “Based off of who will be there his freshman year, they will need him to come in and play right away. I personally think UConn is in a great position to win in the next few years and the staff are all on the same page.”

    Larrier also got to speak with former UConn star Kemba Walker of the Charlotte Bobcats, who was on campus.