One on one with Theo Pinson

As one of the top wings in the class of 2014 and a prospect who has been on campus several times in the last year, Theo Pinson is one of the more interesting players to follow for Duke fans. Pinson sat down for a lengthy interview on Sunday to update his recruitment, his game, and just where he stands with the Blue Devils.

TDD: What do you think of the tournament, and how you guys have fought through some adversity as a team?

Theo Pinson: We lost two in a row to start off so we had a team meeting to get everybody together and on the same page.

Was it a players only meeting?

Yeah it was just the players but the coaches knew and let us have a players only meeting to get things out.

What kind of stuff did you express?

We were getting down big and were hanging our heads and not playing good. It's a game of runs and with all these good players we're playing, we had to get better at dealing with those runs. Everybody wanted to have the meeting and after the second game, we were in the van and we were like, we need to meet now and get things straight.

Do you consider yourself a vocal leader?

Yeah because I've been doing this for over two years now and then most of the guys played 16s last year so they aren't used to playing at this level and how competitive it is. I just took it on myself to step up and be more of a vocal leader with this team.

Lots of guys have different spins on what it means to be a leader. What does it represent to you, Theo?

Leadership shows by example, if I'm dragging the team will probably drag as well or if I'm up and playing hard, the team follows that.

What do you think about the coaches being able to come out and check you guys out in the Spring now that the rule changes are in place?

It's just something new you, it's just adding extra people who are trying to recruit you, so you gotta play even harder.

Are you the type who pays attention to the coaches in the stands watching you play?

Every player who plays looks in the stands to see what coaches are watching them.

Talking with Tyus Jones and Jahlil Okafor earlier in the tournament, they had some interesting comments on how they are trying to recruit you to come join them and play together in college. Is that something you can confirm is actually happening?

We've talked about it a little bit. I mean, why would you not want to play with other talented players? Jahlil, he's a beast, Tyus, he knows where everybody wants to be on the court, so when you get to play together with them, it's just like Kentucky this year and how the boys at UCLA got together, its something you are seeing happen.

That's interesting you bring up that trend that's happening a lot last few years with big classes coming in together, friends going to same places for school, is that something you are interested in doing?

I think if you look at kids, we want to win a championship, and I think after last year, playing with Team USA, just think about if all of us got together and went to the same college after beating teams in Team USA by 50, hopefully we get a chance to do it again in college, we'll see, talk about it some more.

It seems very serious to both of those guys Theo to play together in college down to they are considering a lot of the same schools, is it as serious a proposition for you to look at?

I mean, why wouldn't you want to play with other talented players, especially those two guys, I mean, we keep in touch all the time, us three together it'd be crazy.

Duke is a school that is recruiting all three of you guys, how much discussion has there been between you three reference that program?

When we talk, we haven't really talked about in depth about specific schools yet, we just talk about regular stuff most often.

Are there offers you haven't gotten yet that you are hoping to receive Theo?

No, not really, I think I'm going to find out what offers I really do have and then see where I go from there.

What do you mean finding out what offers you really have?

When I think I have an offer, I like to hear it from the head coach, from him, then that lets me know that that school is real serious about me.

It sounds like you differentiate between a coach showing you interest and a coach offering you, are there schools that have shown a lot of interest but haven't stepped up the way you described with a scholarship offer?

Yeah, Carolina. Honestly I can't think of all of them right now because oftentimes it's my dad talking with the coaches.

With Duke, you've been on campus a lot and played ball with the guys. How much communication has there been with the staff either on campus or off campus?

I had a meeting with all the coaches once when I was a freshman, but it was real cool.

How has the communication been since then with them?

It hasn't been a huge amount since that meeting I'd say, but we've been keeping in touch.

How do you feel about the approach they are taking?

I think it's cool because honestly, they haven't even really gotten to my class yet because they are dealing with the class before me, when I get to be a junior, that's when my class is going to get recruited real hard so I understand why they are approaching the process the way they are.

What causes you to be comfortable with that approach, when I'm sure other players might want to have more attention sooner?

It just really doesn't bother me like that, because I know they are recruiting for next year and then they want to reload for my class. I'm just going to wait my time and keep improving, if I keep improving, I know they will come.

You mentioned Kentucky earlier, how deep has the interest progressed with them?

I think my dad talked to the Kentucky coaches twice, but we haven't talked with them much since then.

What do you think about the big classes they are bringing in each year?

It just means that they will be contenders each year, that's what they do. The people who will win national championships are just going to be the ones who play hard.

Are they recruiting Tyus and Jahlil from what you know?

Yeah, I believe that they are.

Is it a deal breaker if a school is not recruiting all three of you in terms of you considering them?

It depends who is there. Seriously, I would love to play all three of us together, it'd just make even better if a school is recruiting all three of us.


The Devils Den Top Stories