Appleton Heating Up With Big Boys

Tyrone Appleton was a good enough player coming out of high school that Virginia Tech signed him. Two years later, he's got some legitimate big boys lining up for his signature.

Tyrone Appleton, a combo guard for the defending junior college national champs, is in the process of taking official visits. The 6-foot-2 Appleton, a former standout with the SYF Players, has his pick of programs.

The Midland Junior College standout will be at Kansas this weekend. "He's supposed to go on Saturday morning for the game and then fly back on Sunday," Midland coach Grant McCasland said. "There was a call of interest early in the year and then they really got on him a month and a half ago; it was before Christmas."

KU has company in its pursuit of Appleton. Kentucky, Iowa State and Texas are eyeballing him. He visited UK recently on an unofficial and the Wildcats are big time into him. "It couldn't be any higher," McCasland said of UK's interest. "(Gillispie's) been out here not this fall but in the summer and last spring. They have offered him."

James Dye, Appleton's father, indicated the option is open to see UK's campus again. "He was home for the holidays and it was convenient to go up there. We were able to spend some time with Iowa State and Kentucky. The door is open for him to re-visit Kentucky on an official. We were only on Kentucky's campus for about 24 hours."

While Texas angles for a visit, Kansas ponders an offer. "The impression I got was that this weekend if he came to campus they would but I don't know for a fact," McCasland said.

San Jose State received an official visit but when Appleton couldn't pull the trigger with a decision, the Spartans had to go in another direction.

"There's a strong potential that he's going to visit Texas but as it stands now that's about where we are in the process," Dye said. "You say you're going to get it done and close it and then someone else will get into the picture. It's hard to close it off."

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