One on one with Ishmail Wainright

Though an injury has forced him to the sidelines for much of the summer, Ishmail Wainwright is still hearing from all the high major programs. At the Nike Global Skills event in Washington, Wainwright sat down with TDD to update where things stand.

TDD: What does your rehab process for the injury look like?

Ishmail Wainright: I'm working on it every day for sure. I'm just going to keep working hard to be able to get back as soon as possible.

How do you basketball development work while dealing with the injury?

I can do a lot. Everyday for the past month I've been in a chair, working on my shooting form getting up about a 1000 shots per day. I also told my strength coach that i want to tone up and i want to lose weight so i can try and gain good weight back.

What's the communication been like with the various coaching staffs since the new phone rules came in?

It's actually been kinda fun and funny at the same time. Every morning when I wake up I've got texts from coaches who are like "Good morning, Ish" or they'll text late at night. There was one from 4AM in the morning telling me "we're up, thinking about you, we're always thinking about you"… it's just kinda funny.

Are there any coaches that are really standing out with they are saying to you?

They all say the right things you know at this time, but we're going to wait and see after all this summer stuff ends to see who is still on me really hard.

You mentioned Coach Howland and UCLA back in the spring as giving a lot of attention. Is it still the same level of communication?

It's still the same, whenever they get a chance to come see me, they are coming that's for sure, they'll bring three guys a lot to watch me play.

Since you can't play due to the injury, does that give you more time to make visits to schools?

I'm not sure. I would like to, but when I have my surgery here soon, my dad doesn't want me up and walking around a whole lot or traveling a whole lot, so we'll see what happens.

You've mentioned your dad in this group interview several times, seems like you really look to him for guidance in this process…

He's like the main guy. Him, and my mom, and my uncle call themselves Team Wainright, I want to sit down with them and talk about things with my recruitment.

What does your dad advise you to look at when considering a school?

School wise, education is a big deal because whatever school I go to, they are going to have players from all over, teams are all going to have top talent.

Any new schools coming into the picture with you?

Yeah, SMU with Coach Brown, he just got a Twitter recently, we're talking some.

You've mentioned relationships before with other players as a part of your college decision. Do you still have those same relationships ?

Yeah, I still have a lot of those. We call each other brothers. Julius [Randle] texts me here and there and is like, "where we going, what college?" He's like my brother, I call his mom mom too.

What do you and Julius say in private to each other when talking about schools you could play together at potentially?

Where can we win a national championship? He's about winning, I'm about winning, that's the big thing.

How serious is it, really, that you want to play with Julius?

It's always been like that so it is serious, but i'm also not going to wait until the last second to decide. If I feel comfortable about going somewhere, we'll sit down and talk about it to see what he thinks, see how comfortable he is with it.

You sound like a guy who will rely on a certain feeling when it comes to your decision, is that a fair assessment?

It really depends on the school, you know? I'm not going to make a decision on my own because I did that before and I had to back away from it because i needed to have my family involved.

It sounds like you are preparing yourself not to go to Duke based on your comments about Semi Ojeleye in this interview…is that a fair interpretation?

That's, well, if he doesn't take the scholarship offer from Duke that he has, then I'm not going to rush into it. I'm going to see how things goes and if the offer is still on the table like next year, then I'll take a serious look.

When Coach K put the scholarship offer on the table to you, did they indicate it was contingent?

They didn't put any kind of pressure on me at all.

It sounds like you are comfortable with where you are at since you have other good offers from schools like UCLA, Baylor and many others. Are there any other schools that you don't have an offer from that you hope to get?

My mom and dad, they actually want the Kentucky offer real bad, but I've always been the type of guy who has said, don't rush things.

What makes them want the Kentucky offer?

They've always loved Coach Calipari, I've always loved him too, he's always been my favorite coach, more than anybody else.

How long has that been the case

As long as I can remember, probably since his time at Memphis.

How will you handle it if the offer doesn't come from Kentucky? Is that something you feel you need before you can make a college decision?

It'd be nice, and it might hurt if I don't get it, but at the same time I'd move on.

The Devils Den Top Stories