Four star SG talks visits & recruiting

One of the best shooting guards in the class of 2014 spent the early half of this month making unofficial visits around the country. That tour included a stop on Tobacco Road where Grayson Allen visited Duke, North Carolina, and NC State. After returning home and processing it all, Allen spoke to TDD about the visit.

What was the motivation to squeeze three visits into one?

Grayson Allen: Well, first of all, it was just kind of perfect for me because I was off school on that Monday, so it allowed me a three day weekend. I wanted to get up to North Carolina so I could see all of the schools, because I have interest in them. I figured it would make a seven hour trip that much easier if I did it all together.

Who visited with you?

It was just myself and my parents.

What was it that made you want to visit so early?

I feel like, these three schools are obviously great basketball schools, and all three are great options that I could look into down the road. Just to have the visits out the way and know what the programs are like, what the schools are like, what campus life is like, as I'm closer to my decision, it'll be nice to have these visits already completed and know what's going on at these three schools.

What was the interest level like from all three schools prior to the visits?

NC State is the only one out of the three that has actually offered me, at this time. Both UNC and Duke have interest in me, and have said they want to see me play more. I'd say it's more from NC State at the moment, but Duke and Carolina are staying in touch and they have been showing good interest. NC State offered, I want to say, right after the second July period. Coach Gottfried had personally seen me play.

How much contact has there been with Duke and UNC?

It's been steady. I'd say we talk on the phone at least once a month and we text here and there. I haven't talked with Coach Williams before on the phone but I have talked with Coach K before on the phone.

What were your conversations with Coach K like?

When you see these coaches on TV, it's weird to think you'll actually be on the phone with them someday, but talking with Coach K, he's a totally normal guy and it was great to talk with him.

You hear a lot from players that when they talk with Coach K, he's a very direct and to the point kind of person…

For me, we talked a lot about basketball, and he's very personable about everything. He likes to talk about more stuff than just Duke and recruiting.

What kind of basketball stuff did he talk about?

We talked right after he returned from coaching Team USA in London, so he was talking with me about what it was like as a basketball coach coaching all the NBA players and what the game is like over there and what it was like coaching the guys.

What did you take away from that?

He pretty much explained how interesting it is to coach those guys, what it's like coaching the best players like LeBron and how they all come ready to work everyday.

How do you feel about where your recruiting process is now?

I feel like i have a little bit of a better handle on it, but i haven't narrowed anything down. I'm just enjoying things at the moment. This upcoming season, i'm going to be watching a lot of teams, watching the plays they run, their playing style, the players they have and what they do with them, and so on. That's when I'll start to narrow things down and go from there.

What were your observations of watching the teams play on the visit?

I didn't get to see to Duke play, but NC State and North Carolina….they both like to push the ball from what i saw. That's something I really like, they both scored over 80 points and it seemed like every time they got the ball on a rebound, they were getting down the court and keeping teams on their heels, that was something I liked seeing.

They were good, its always good to see freshman play because I hope to play early myself. It was real impressive seeing them come out and play and not be nervous, Rodney and TJ played really well and Tyler Lewis really surprised me, he played very well, had some nice passes.

How do you evaluate your fit with these programs as you watched them play?

I really look at the point guard and the two wings and see what they are doing. I try to think to myself of what i would do in that situation. Both schools wings really got up the floor, spread the court and got the pitch ahead from the point guard and attack and kick whenever they can and they also used the ball-screen, which is what I like.

How big a deal is it for you to see Duke in person this year since you didn't get to see them this trip?

That's definitely something I hope can happen, but I'm not sure yet because my high school season runs really long. I'll definitely be watching them play a lot on TV since i didn't get to see them on this trip.

What did you get to do on your trip to Duke since you didn't see a game?

I got a really nice tour of the campus first. Also, I got to see what student life was like on campus, where the athletes stayed and i got to observe practice too, which was great.

Who was your host on the tour?

When I was doing the tour, the team was in a team meeting, so I was with a grad assistant or something like that, but when the basketball stuff was going, Coach Wojo was showing me the facilities and stuff.

Is Coach Wojo your primary recruiter?

Coach Wojo is, and also Nate James. Both are real cool, even though both are coaches at one of the best programs, they are both just so easy to talk to, it's really a friend to friend conversation, it's not like they act superior or anything.

What were your impressions of the new facilities?

They were really nice, they were just as good, if not better than the other places I've seen.

Did you get any chance to interact with Coach K on the visit?

Yes, we did, a little bit during the beginning of the visit. We talked a lot about basketball and his background, the players he's had at Duke before and the relationship he has with them.

Now that you've gotten to visit all three schools, do you have more interest in any of them?

Not right now, they are all tight right now in my mind. I like all three equally. They all said they are going to stay in touch and come see me more in my high school season.

How a big a deal is it that NC State offered first?

There is something to be said that they offered me first and saw me first, but Duke and Carolina didn't get to see me play a lot this summer. It's not a huge deal that NC State offered first, but it is still means something.

Lot of guys in your class are potentially making their decision within the next year or so, where do you fall with that?

I'll probably be in the same timeframe. I'd like to have it done before my high school season but after my AAU season.

What's your updated list of schools you have strong interest in outside of Duke, NC State and North Carolina?

Stanford, Indiana, Purdue, Kansas, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Florida, Florida State, UCF, South Florida, Miami, Texas, Alabama, i think that it's right now. Stanford has looked over my grades and said they are good enough to get in.

Any upcoming visits?

Nothing planned so far

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