Jalen Smith (Nike/Jon Lopez)

NBPA: Q&A with four-star Jalen Smith

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- Four-star big man Jalen "Sticks" Smith averaged 7.1 points and 4.8 rebounds a game, while shooting nearly 68-percent from the field in nine games at NBPA Camp this past week. During camp, the talented big man talked to Scout about his game, an upcoming trip to Maryland and his recruitment.

Evan Daniels: How has the spring been going for you?
Jalen Smith: It's been going well. Coming to the camps, working out with the NBA players. It’s been a great experience. It’s probably one of the highlights of my summer, now I’m just looking forward to Peach Jam.

What’s the next step in your development?
I’m trying to work on my outside game, my dribbling and my shooting. My shooting has gone down recently, so I need to build that back up. And my overall strength, which I’ve been working on lately.

How’s the recruiting process going?
It’s going well. I’m starting to really get into it now and I’m starting to decide what to look for and what I want to have and what’s standing out to me.

Who is prioritizing you?
MarylandVillanovaSyracuseVirginiaMiami (Fl) and Arizona

What’s the next step in your recruitment?
Probably to deciding who I’m going to cut. It’s going to be hard because of the relationship I built with the coaches. Mainly just focused on my major and what I’m going to major in.

Are there any schools sticking out in terms of places you would like to do official visits to?
I’m doing an official to Maryland next week and I’m planning to take one to Villanova after Peach Jam and Syracuse as well.

What do you like about Maryland?
The main thing I like is how coach Turgeon coaches at a fast tempo and he brings everyone back together when they start to disband, and also how they have my teammate from high school there with them.

What about Villanova?
I like how coach Wright, there’s no five position for him. Everybody can dribble and everybody can play on the wing. Just how I could play with [Brandon] Slater again. He’s one of my closest teammates.

Then what about Syracuse?
They stand out a lot. I like their 2-3 zone. It really has an impact on the teams they play and just how they have a fast tempo and get their bigs involved.


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