Leonard Has List At Nine

Jeff Goodman recently caught up with Damien Leonard and received his freshly trimmed list of schools.

I don't do a whole lot in terms of covering recruiting anymore, but there are certain kids that catch my eye while out in the summer.

One of them was Damien Leonard, a sweet-shooting 6-foot-4, 185-pound wing out of J.L. Mann high school in South Carolina. 

Leonard, who has drawn comparisons to another smooth wing out of the state years ago, Ray Allen, has big-time range and has become a highly sought-after recruit following a stint with the Florida Rams in July.

But he was out to show people that considered him a one-dimensional perimeter shooter that they were incorrect in their assessment.

``That really motivated me," Leonard said. ``I wanted to show people I could do more than just shoot the ball."

``He's gotten a lot stronger and has been working on getting to the hole," said mentor Willis Holliday. ``He's also shown that he can handle the ball. They have him playing a lot of point guard."

Leonard is averaging 21 points, nine rebounds and five assists this season and has attracted plenty of attention from high-major schools.

Leonard told me his list of finalists looks like this: Virginia Tech, Clemson, Oklahoma State, Kentucky, Texas, Wake Forest, Kansas, UConn and Indiana.

``There's no leader," said Leonard, who was supposed to go on an unofficial visit to Oklahoma State this past weekend before weather forced him to cancel. ``I'd like to make a decision after this summer."

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