Cook Leading Oak Hill

Prior to taking the floor at the 2011 Hoophall Classic, Duke bound point guard Quinn Cook spoke with TDD about his season to date and what he's looking forward to the most going forward.

Note: Oak Hill suffered its first loss of the season against Milton (Ga.) Academy at the Hoophall Classic after this interview was conducted.

Over the late spring and early summer Quinn Cook had a decision to make. Not where he wanted to go to college - that decision would be made in the fall. Instead, Cook had to decide if he wanted to leave his local high school and transfer to nationally recognized Oak Hill Academy to finish his college eligibility.

"It was a tough decision originally, but being at Oak Hill has been great for me," said Cook. "It's been a little bit of an adjustment for me as well. We travel much more than we did at Dematha and every game we play is a sell out. I mean we did travel at Dematha, but not like this."

"So far the season has been really good and really challenging for me. Our team is still sacrificing and coming together and the Milton game will be a very big test for us. But to this point we're 16-0 and have beaten some really great teams."

Oddly enough the Warriors wouldn't pass the test posed by Milton, losing 75-69 after falling behind huge in the first quarter. In that game Cook struggled with his offense, connecting on just 5-of-21 from the floor. Despite the setback, Cook is a likely McDonald's All-American and may be asked to assume a big role in Durham next year depending on what happens with Kyrie Irving and the NBA. Thankfully he'll have a built in support group when he gets to Duke.

"I talk to Nolan every day about everything. I also talk to Kyrie a lot as well. I played AAU with Josh and Tyler so of course we talk a lot as well. I'm also in touch with Austin regularly. I haven't had a chance to talk to Marshall or Mike since my visit, but I've been trying to keep up with their success throughout the year."

"The guys already at Duke are very focused on what they are doing and on the season. I've watched them a lot this season and they've been outstanding. Coach really knows how to get guys to give it their all day in and day out. I think Kyrie played great before the injury, but Nolan has done a great job sliding over to the point."

Being part of the Duke family was something Cook had thought about long and hard throughout the recruiting process, but there were always questions and other options. So while several other high major players were long committed before signing day, the five star prospect actually waited until the very end to announce he'd become a Blue Devil.

"I wouldn't have done anything differently, honestly. I felt I did everything I needed to do to get myself to the next level and in the right spot. When signing day came, it was great. I felt great about my decision and I was really happy that I was going to Duke. I am really happy that I'm going to be able to go to a great school for free to make it easier on my mom."

"If I had to give some advice on how to handle the recruiting process, it would be to just enjoy it and work hard. It'll be over before you know it, so enjoy this time."

Given the uncertainty of the roster next year, Cook may be competing for the starting point guard role or he may be battling for sixth man responsibilities. Either way there is one thing he does know for certain.

"I really want to wear number two. It's been my number for the past four years and Nolan leaves, so I'll have a chance to keep the tradition up."

As he continues his senior season as the lead guard for the nation's most visible high school team, Cook knows his every move will be scrutinized and watched. A good example came earlier this season when he tweeted that his recently repaired knee has "given out" on him during a scrimmage. While it may have given Duke fans reason to be concerned, Cook says that's one problem he's not worried about.

"Since I had surgery in September, my knee just wasn't 100 percent early on. But now it's almost there. I still have a little bit of therapy and exercises to do to get it back to where I need to be, but I'm healthy and now it's just about getting my confidence back to do everything I can do."

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