Big men are always at a premium in college basketball recruiting, but in an especially bare 2013 class of bigs, Austin Nichols has begun to stand out. The four-star center is currently regarded as the eighth-best center in the class by Scout.com while coming in at No. 53 in the national rankings. The long, versatile, and skilled Nichols was offered by Coach K earlier in the spring and has since spoken to him and some Duke assistant coaches.
"When I talk to Duke I talk to Coach K and Coach Collins and then I spoke with Coach Wojo on Twitter," Nichols said of his recent communication with Blue Devil coaching staff.
Nichols seems to notice the constant communication with Duke's coaches, as he pointed out the Devils when asked who was recruiting him the hardest.
After winning the Real Deal in the Rock in April, Nichols recruitment exploded, and his offer list is littered with some of the nation's most prestigious college basketball programs.
The recruiting process has rapidly increased for Nichols, but he's currently still biding his time and gathering information as the calls continue to come in.
"Things have been crazy with the recruitment and everything," Nichols said. "I haven't scheduled any visits yet, and I don't really have a list at this point."
While Nichols has yet to schedule any visits, Duke's coaches have conveyed their desire for him to visit campus during their conversations, according to Austin.
"The (Duke) coaches want me to come down and see a game or two at some point," Nichols said. "They like how I play; how I can step out and hit the jumper. They like my length and how I run the floor."
On the court, Nichols will hit camps in June followed by another run with M33M and Duke target Robert Hubbs in July. Nichols has already attended an Adidas Nations session and is hoping to attend some other camps as well. "I went to Adidas Nations in Las Vegas, and hopefully I'll be going to the King James Academy. I think I might be going to Amar'e camp, as well," Nichols said.
In particular, Austin enjoyed his first session at Adidas Nations, which gathers some of the nation's best high school basketball players for camps throughout the spring and summer.
"It was a great experience being at my first Adidas camp," Nichols said. "It was great playing with guys like the Harrison twins (Aaron and Andrew) and I'm looking forward to playing with all the other great players. It's been a great experience so far."