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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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Friday / July 12.
  • Malik Newman Says He Has No Timetable on a Decision

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    Malik NewmanMalik Newman is expected to announce his college choice sometime during the late signing period, possibly after the NBA Early Entry Eligibility Deadline on April 26.

    But the 6-foot-3, 175-pound guard from Callaway (MS) High says he has no timetable at the moment.

    “I’m not sure yet,” Newman told ESPNU’s Recruiting Nation on Friday morning. “We still don’t have a timetable for that but right now I’m not sure.”

    Newman was selected for three high-profile events in April where he will be mixing with other elite 2015 players, some of whom will be whispering in his ear about joining them at their schools. Newman will play in the McDonald’s All-American Game (April 1), the Nike Hoop Summit (April 11) and the Jordan Brand Classic (April 17).

    Kentucky-bound point guard Isaiah Briscoe, who will be at all three events, is working on getting Newman to join him in the backcourt with the Wildcats. That backcourt will also include Tyler Ulis and Charles Matthews, who was also selected to the Jordan Game.

    “He’s coming to Kentucky,” Briscoe recently told “It ain’t a done deal but I’m going to try to get him to come down to Kentucky with me.”

    Meantime, LSU-bound point forward Ben Simmons will be on the World Team at the Hoop Summit and is working on getting Newman to join him and shooting guard Antonio Blakeney with the Tigers. (Blakeney will also play in the McDonald’s Game.)

    Newman is also considering N.C. State, Kansas, Ole Miss and Mississippi State. He plans official visits to Kentucky, Kansas, LSU and N.C. State, but hasn’t set any dates yet.

    Assistant coaches from N.C. State, Kansas, Kentucky and Mississippi State all saw Newman play this week, and LSU may come next week.

    Though Newman was linked to LSU in a recent online report, he Tweeted his thoughts on that: “I see the crystal ball stressing a lot of ppl out! Yall kill me.”

    Asked by ESPNU what his least favorite aspect of recruiting was right now, Newman said, “Probably social media right now.”

    He added: “A lot of the predictions and fans just going crazy about predictions, that’s probably the thing that I hate right now.”

    Still, a source close to the situation told that LSU is “in there for sure.”

    LSU does offer immediate playing time at the point alongside Blakeney and Simmons, the projected No. 2 pick in the 2016 NBA Draft.

    Kentucky, meantime, has Briscoe and Ulis already in the fold at point guard (assuming Andrew and Aaron Harrison don’t return).

    N.C. State has sophomore Cat Barber at the point, who has been playing very well as of late, and Kansas has sophomore Frank Mason III and freshman Devonte Graham.

    Asked what he liked about the schools on his list, Newman told ESPNU: “The thing that I like about them all, all those guys they let their guards play. They all have good teams. Right now Mississippi State, they are rebuilding, but as you can see they are getting better and better each game. I credit the coaching staff with that. Those guys, they win, they all have a good track record so you just can’t overlook those guys.”

    Newman, who is pursuing his fourth straight state championship, recently had his jersey retired at Callaway while he is still playing.

    “It was special,” he said. “It was very special, but at the same time it came with a lot of responsibility, especially for that game because fans were expecting me to come out and have a great game.”

    Newman’s uncle is Charlotte Hornets point guard Mo Williams, who scored 52 points in a game in January. After the game, Williams Tweeted, “Getting buckets like @iammaliknewman unite. #yepimtired.”

    “I was surprised,” Newman said. “I didn’t think that he he would Tweet and say that he was getting buckets like me, so it was kind of surprising for me.

    “When we talk, we talk about serious things, but we also sit around and have fun a lot.”

    Asked what advice Williams gives him, Newman said, “Just to always keep my head up and never listen to what the critics say.”

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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.

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