Class of 2023 guard Jayden Lemond drawing high-major interest, talks transfer and reclassification | Zagsblog
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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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Saturday / June 19.
  • Class of 2023 guard Jayden Lemond drawing high-major interest, talks transfer and reclassification

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    By JACOB POLACHECK

    After a busy start to the new year that included reclassifying and transferring, Jayden Lemond is emerging as a must-see prospect in the New Jersey area.

    “It’s been crazy, but it’s been good,” he said. “I felt that reclassifying was good for me. It put a lot of publicity out there, especially in New Jersey. A lot of people were talking about it and it was a big thing. It’s just pretty crazy.”

    The 6-foot-4, 150-pound point guard recently announced his transfer from Dwight-Englewood (N.J.) School to Blair (N.J.) Academy and will reclassify to the 2023 class.

    “Jayden is a high skill guard who works feverishly at his game,” Blair Academy head coach Joe Mantegna said. “More importantly, he is a high character, academically-oriented young man who will be a perfect fit with our Cause Over Self culture.”

    Lemond says his relationship with coach Mantegna and coach Jon Dejesus played an important role in his decision to transfer.

    “I felt that it was a place that I could elevate my game,” he said. “A place that I could take my game to different levels and elevate as a person on and off the court.”

    Lemond says his goals at Blair Academy are to ‘be a good teammate, good leader and help the team in any possible way’.

    “I want to make game-changing plays and impact the team to get wins,” he said. “Right now, I’m working on all levels of my game, especially my shooting and my IQ. I’ve been watching a lot of film.”

    Lemond announced his decision to transfer on Jan. 4 and four days later, TCU became the latest school to extend an offer.

    “They made their pitch on a three-way call,” he said. “It’s a private university. They’ve been doing well this year. They have a couple losses against some conference teams, but I really like them a lot.

    “They talk about my guard play, saying I’m someone that’s really talented and someone they can’t miss on, especially in the 2023 class.”

    Lemond says that TCU, UConn, Auburn, Michigan, Creighton, Stanford, Georgia Tech, Georgia and Vanderbilt are the main schools involved with his recruitment.

    He broke down each school for ZAGSBLOG Tuesday evening:

    UConn: “I had a Zoom call before I transferred, like a month or two ago. They put me through the whole thing, talking about being back in the Big East. They’re a guard heavy squad. The guards are what make the team go and they thought that I would be a good fit there.”

    Auburn: “I was constantly talking to coach [Ira] Bowman and he just told me to stay in the gym. They just got Sharife [Cooper] back so he said to watch them play and see how I’d fit in the offense.”

    Michigan: “Before I reclassified, I was talking to coach [Howard] Eisley. They’re doing extremely well this year and haven’t lost a game on the season. They’re playing well as a team. He said that he and coach Juwan [Howard] really like me as a player. They don’t really see a ceiling for me and they think I can make the next level as long as I put the work in.”

    Creighton: “That call was great. Coach Terrence Rencher and I talked a lot about being in the Big East, how they’re doing this year as No. 8 in the country, shooting the ball really well. He thinks I can be a good fit there, especially with their guard play. Their guard play right now is really crazy with Marcus [Zegarowski]. Watching Marcus and the other guards is something I’m looking after.”

    Stanford: “I’ve been watching a lot of film on them. They play defense extremely well, help-side defense. They pass the ball really well, always making the extra pass. They make it easier for each other and I like that a lot.”

    Georgia Tech: “They’ve beaten teams like Kentucky and UNC this season. They’ve been playing their best basketball this year. They’re getting great guard play from Jose [Alvarado] and Kyle [Sturdivant]. That’s what really leads them. Coach [Julian] Schwartz has been sending me a lot about their guards and we always talk about how heavy their guard play is.”

    Georgia: “They got off to a slow start, but they’ve been talking to my dad, saying how talented I am.”

    Vanderbilt: “I speak with the staff almost every week. They’re just checking on me, seeing how I’m doing, seeing how my transfer is going. They’re excited that I’m transferring. I’ve been watching them a lot this year, seeing how Scotty Pippen Jr. takes control of the team.”

    On the court, Lemond labels himself as a ‘pure point guard’.

    “I have a really nice feel for the game, not going to get sped up,” he said. “I know how to take control of the game. I’m very unselfish. I’m going to look for my teammates before I look for my own shots. When I get going, I feel like no one can stop me.”

    This story has been updated.

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