JUCO forward Langston Wilson holds more than 40 offers | Zagsblog
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Wednesday / October 21.
  • JUCO forward Langston Wilson holds more than 40 offers

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    By JACOB POLACHECK

    Class of 2021 JUCO forward Langston Wilson currently holds more than 40 college offers, but his route to high-major Division 1 basketball has been far from ordinary.

    “I don’t think a lot of people know that I didn’t play high school basketball,” Wilson said in a phone interview with ZAGSBLOG Saturday. “That surprises a lot of people when I tell them that.”

    The 6-foot-9, 215-pound small forward from Georgia Highlands (GA) College, moved to Atlanta with his sister in March of 2019 and it was there that he caught the attention of Georgia Highlands (GA) College.

     “A coach saw me at an open gym and put me in touch with coach J.J. [Merritt],” he said. “It was a twist of fate, more or less. The rest is history.”

    After a 2019-20 season at Georgia Highlands in which he averaged 10.1 points, 7.6 rebounds and 0.6 assists on 54 percent shooting, Wilson has picked up offers from some of the biggest schools in Division 1 basketball.

    “Langston Wilson is an unbelievable young man that gets it on all levels of life and deserves the attention he is getting,” Merritt said by text Saturday. “His story is one that should motivate every person in this world.”

    Most recently, Wilson has picked up offers from Texas A&M, Maryland Eastern Shore, Howard and Kansas.

    He broke down each school:

    Texas A&M: “Coach Buzz [Williams] recently took over the program not too long ago. Me and them have had a lot of good conversations, with me and the staff. The way that they play fits my game. They like to get up and down in transition and they have a lot of people in that forward spot that are pretty versatile. We’ve had a lot of good conversations and I’m looking forward to having a Zoom with them this upcoming week.”

    Maryland Eastern Shore: “Coach Kevon [Davis] was the assistant coach at Indian Hills [Community College] before this. He’s a good friend of my dad. My dad and coach Kevon coached together at one point. I’ve been in contact with coach [Jason] Crafton with him being a guy that was an NBA trainer, which is huge. They have a great staff. I did a Zoom call with them and that’s where they offered me a scholarship. What I was hearing from them was with them being an HBCU, which is huge with everything that’s going on socially and in the world right now, was about being a highly-rated prospect and changing the culture. That was the main point of conversation between me and them.”

    Kansas: “I know a lot about them. I’ve watched them on TV plenty of times. They play a really good brand of basketball and I respect it. I had great conversations with coach [Jerrance] Howard, the assistant coach and coach [Bill] Self as well. They’re really more down to earth than a lot of people would expect them to be. For them to be in the position that they’re in, having a great program, winning the Big 12 for so many years, getting to the tournament and attaining a No. 1 overall ranking in the country on multiple occasions over multiple years, sending multiple people to the NBA, that’s huge. A few guys from my area, the Morris twins, who went there and did well under them and were able to get to the NBA. I’m pretty familiar with Kansas. A lot of people are.”

    Howard: “I had talked to Howard since February kind of consistently. A lot of our conversations happened then. It’s kind of the same thing with them. Especially getting Makur Maker was huge. They’re talking to me about that and having a prospect like him on campus, it’s really big for them, with him being a five-star and having all the blue-blood schools on him, but choosing to go to Howard.”

    Wilson’s other offers include: Arizona State, West Virginia, Florida International, Kansas State, Georgia, Memphis, Seton Hall, Alabama, South Carolina, Penn State, Tulsa, Cleveland State, Towson, Texas Southern, La Salle, Wichita State, Oregon, Mississippi Valley State, Ole Miss, UAB, SMU, East Carolina, SIUE, VCU, North Carolina A&T, Maryland, Murray State, Norfolk State, Morgan State, Nicholls State, Troy, Cal State Bakersfield, Little Rock, Mount St. Mary’s, Iona, Saint Louis, Grambling State, Miles and Alcorn State.

    “I’m really just trying to feel out the recruiting process and hear what everyone has to say,” Wilson said. “A lot of people are saying that I’m trying to play the numbers game, but that’s not the case at all. Being someone in my position and being new to this, someone that wasn’t recruited, I’m new to the basketball scene in general.

    “I’m just taking my time to make sure that I’m making the right decision because this decision could not only affect me and my family now, but could change my family and the aspect of the whole course that my family is and my family is living for generations to come.”

    Wilson said he has no timetable yet for a decision.

    “I’m just really trying to make sure that I make the best possible decision. That’s really the main thing for me,” he said. “When I get that feeling and I feel comfortable enough to make a decision then I’ll make a decision. Also, with that, if I feel that I have a few schools that I’m really feeling, then I’ll go ahead and cut my list. Right now, I’m still trying to feel everything out.”

    When evaluating his options, Wilson says the biggest factor is the community.

    “I want to be in a strong basketball environment,” he said. “I also want to be in a strong community, just around a lot of support and a lot of things like that. I want to play for a staff that wants the best for me and wants to see me succeed, not only at that level, but at the next level as well.

    “Having a staff dedicated to helping me improve on and off the court and a situation where I can go in and not only leave as a better basketball player, but as a better person.”

    Due to the coronavirus pandemic, Wilson has been unable to take visits this summer and says the only school he’s visited in-person has been Georgia State.

    “I would love to take visits and be able to see the campuses,” he said. “It would for sure make things a lot easier and help me understand a lot of things, but outside of that, it’s really just about me feeling comfortable.

    “Official visits would probably make things a lot easier, but if I do find myself in a position where I feel comfortable and I’ll be able to do it, I have no problem with making a decision.”

    Having gone through the junior college route, Wilson says that he’s had the opportunity to mature which has helped him as he navigates the recruiting process.

    “People can’t ‘wow you’ with a bunch of bells and whistles,” he said. “There has to have something behind it. In the recruiting process, you can’t get away with the hearsay. You have to be honest and tell it like it is.

    “You didn’t go to JUCO and go through all of that just to go to a school and be stuck on the bench. I just feel as though when you’re going through the decision process, a lot of things that may have wowed a 17 year old kid aren’t going to wow me as a 19-20 year old man.”

    Photo: Georgia Highlands College

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