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.
Jalen Brunson Targeting Decision Before Season Starts
By CHIP MILLER & ADAM ZAGORIA
FRISCO, Texas — Mac Irvin point guard Jalen Brunson is targeting a summer decision after recently announcing he had cut his list to eight schools.
The 6-foot-1, 175-pound Brunson will choose between Michigan State, UConn, Purdue, Illinois, Kansas, Villanova, Michigan and Temple.
“Before the [high school] season starts,” Brunson said of his timetable on a decision. “I think when I find the best fit for me, I will know.”
Between now and then Brunson says he’ll continue to focus on his game.
“I need to work a lot on my defense,” he said at last weekend’s Nike EYBL stop here. “Also just being more consistent at the line and as a shooter and just closing out games, but more importantly being a leader.”
Brunson, the son of former pro player Rick Brunson, recently hosted several in-homes.
One was with Kansas’ Bill Self and assistant Jerrance Howard who had a clear message for the pass first guard, “We need you, we need a point guard.”
Brunson said Self made it clear that they’re not “guaranteeing anything, but they said if you work hard, you have a chance.”
That’s right up Brunson’s alley.
“That’s what I want,” he said. “I don’t want things given to me, I want to work for it.”
When it comes to UConn, Brunson hasn’t missed the success Coach Kevin Ollie has in developing guards.
“He just really likes to develop his guards and guards win championships,” Brunson said.
Michigan State’s Coach Tom Izzo gained Brunson’s, too.
“One of the all-time best coaches ever,” he said. “Playing for a coach like that would be pretty cool.”
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.