Now that Little Rock Southwest Christian Academy forward Eric Curry has visited all three of his finalists, he’s ready to announce his decision and get on with his final prep campaign.
Curry (6-8, 210), a Memphis native, plans to do that later this week after sizing up Minnesota, Iowa State and Arkansas, where he officially visited this weekend.
“It could be just any day this week,” Curry said.
“Actually my mom (Audrea Phipps) really helped me out a lot with it so she’s done a great job with it. I just took my time. It’s my decision so I went along with it and just paced myself and took my time on it and thought everything through to make sure I made the right decision.”
Curry, who averaged 15.4 points and 8.6 rebounds, has several factors he is looking for in a school.
“Just picking out the right school for me like style of play, how well I get along with the coaching staff and coming in and having an impact on a school like being able to play right away. Stuff like that.”
Razorback head coach Mike Anderson and assistant Melvin Watkins did an in-home visit with Curry last week.
"The Arkansas coaches are some really good guys and some really good coaches," Curry said.
Arkansas’ new Performance Center is a big positive in its recruitment of Curry, who played with the Arkansas Wings AAU.
“It’s pretty amazing,” Curry said. “They did a nice job building this place. It’s pretty cool. This is probably one of the top notch places I’ve seen. This is real nice.”
The facility not only has basketball practice courts for both the Razorbacks and Lady Razorbacks, but also houses training rooms, weight rooms, film rooms, offices, lounges and other amenities.
“Those pools in there, like they have the treadmills and stuff like that,” Curry said “It’s crazy.”
Curry thinks the practice facility is very important in the development of college players.
“This is real big,” Curry said. “This is a big part of what we need and all basketball players need so this is a big part of it.”
Curry is viewed as a stretch four forward in college, similar to what Bobby Portis played for the Razorbacks the past two seasons.
“One of my strengths is being very versatile,” Curry said. “I can come out on the perimeter. I can post I finish around the rim pretty well. Even though I’ve been improving a lot on perimeter I think I still need to work on that. That’s one of the big factors I need to work on.”
He also has offers from SMU, Alabama, VCU, Murray State and St. Louis.
Curry plays with a nasty streak, something he says he gets from his mom.
“All the hard work, all the hard work comes from her,” Curry said.
Curry gives his mom a lot of credit for his success.
“She does all the right things, I just try and look and make her happy,” Phipps said. “She works hard so I’m going to try and work hard and make sure she doesn’t have worry about nothing no more the rest of her life.”
Phipps says she has done what she can to help her son with the process.
“It has been exciting and it’s been tiring but all and all like I said my experience,” Phipps said. “I don’t think is pretty much any different than anyone else’s, it’s just pacing. You have to keep your kid grounded and try and keep them from stressing because it gets stressful and just gone on with the flow.
She wants Curry to feel comfortable about his choice.
“Getting a feel for everything,” Phipps said. “First and foremost you got to be comfortable whoever you’re going to let your kid go to. You have to have that feeling to where you’re not going to worry about the kid.
“Of course you’re going to miss them but you don’t want to worry You got to get that feeling when you go.”
Phipps says she has done her best to keep her son grounded.
“Pretty much I tell him whenever he’s feeling stress give it to me,” Phipps said. “If somebody is bothering him, if somebody is being too overwhelming I need to know because
I’ll just shut it down. Point blank period. You’re not going to stress the kid.
“This is one of the most biggest decisions in their life that they have to make and they have to make it. So you have to let them have their breathing room. You have to let them take their time and do this. It can’t be rushed.”
Curry made the move from his home in Memphis to Southwest Christian Academy before his junior season.
“It helped me a lot because we play good competition every night and we travel so being able to play the best every time we step on the court helps me a lot and makes me bring my A game every game,” Curry said.