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.
M.J. Walker, the 6-foot-5 shooting guard from Jonesboro (Ga.) High School, is currently on an official visit to UCLA, sources confirmed to ZAGSBLOG.
Walker, ranked No. 25 by ESPN.com, is one of four Top 40 players in the ESPN rankings who remains uncommitted, along with Mohamed Bamba, Brian Bowen and Tremont Waters.
Walker has also recently visited Ohio State, Virginia Tech, Florida State and Georgia Tech.
“What has taken him so long to commit is he comes from a very smart family and they know basketball,” Jonesboro coach Dan Maehlmantold 247Sports.com. “His mother played at Hampton and his dad played at Norfolk State. His sister played at Miles College, a Division II school in Alabama.
“A lot of high school kids these days have people and a network to help them make a decision. But they are taking their time with this to make sure they not only have the right program but also the right place for M.J.”
Jones averaged 27.8 points and 6.5 rebounds as a senior.
“He can play anywhere – the one, two or the three,” Maehlman told 247. “He has worked on every aspect of his game, including his ball handling and his defense. Everybody knows he can score.
“He first came to us as a ninth grader. He came in at 6-5. He wasn’t as bulky as he is now. He can penetrate, he can pull up and he can finish at the rim. He can dunk on you and he can also step out to 24 or 26 feet. He can hit NBA-range threes. He’s not just a spot shooter.
“He did all of this through his hard work.”
Maehlman added that he expects Walker to decide “by the end of the month.”
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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 and filmmaker whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, 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.