Chris Jeter, father of Chase Jeter: Yeah, from state championships to U of A to a couple of days at work then onto some school work and then taking the Duke visit, it's been a long couple of weeks. Duke, they just treated us and Chase awesome, it was unbelievable, everybody from the coaching staff to the Crazies to the academic staff, they were just great, it was a great experience for Chase and for the family. We thoroughly enjoyed it.
What was it about how they treated you that made you describe the visit in such a way?
It's just felt right, the whole environment, talking with Coach K and with the other coaches, they were able to talk to Chase, not just as a basketball player, but as a young man and we had several wonderful conversations with them.
What kind of things were discussed in those conversations?
They talked about what position Chase would play if he came to Duke, Jabari no doubt is going to the NBA this year, you've got other guys who are graduating and Myles Turner might come in, Jahlil is likely to be a one and done kid, so for Chase, there's a big opportunity for him to come in and potentially start as a freshman.
That's a very interesting response, did Coach K indicate they feel like Myles is going to attend Duke?
Not necessarily, you know, he has a couple more visits left, Myles is a great kid, I've known him for about a year now and I've known his dad for about the same amount of time so I know in my opinion, it'd be great if Myles and Jahlil played together for next year and for them to potentially mentor Chase after that year.
As parents, what were your thoughts going into the Duke visit?
We don't talk about the distance, the time it would take for us to get there from Las Vegas, but when we were there, we realized that this is a great opportunity for Chase to grow as a young man and as a student-athlete. To be able to be mentored by Coach K and his coaching staff, it really was wonderful to see to be able to talk with Coach K at the level that we were able to about Chase, it was great.
Was there anything from your interactions with Coach K and the Duke staff that is still standing out in your mind?
We're comfortable with Chase going to Duke. We're comfortable knowing that Chase will be well taken care of by Coach K and the staff, the players there are wonderful. The situation there is so great with so many other great players from so many other states, for Duke to actually select what players they want to have come to the program, it's awesome. Chase having the great GPA that he has, he actually met with the academic advisor who pretty much said, Chase is pretty much a perfect fit here, he fits the Duke profile as a student, he's in charge of 30,000 applicants a year to Duke, so Chase was pretty much able to have his interview with the academic advisor that went great. We're not nervous at all about Chase going to school 1000s of miles away, it would be a great situation for Chase if he decides to go there.
With Chase choosing to take his 1st official visit relatively early in his recruiting process, what was it about Duke that merited them hosting you guys for his first official visit?
Well it was two things. Duke is one of Chase's top schools, there's no order to why we did that, the game was coming up with North Carolina, so to have the opportunity to see both Coach Roy Williams and Coach K coach in a game at the same time, it was kinda killing two birds with one stone.
What was it like watching those two coaches' coach during the game?
We were on the Duke side of course, it was very intense watching both coaches. Coach K, it was nice seeing him have that 5 man rotation and they had the lead the whole game, watching his style, he motivates his kids, the way he talks, they pay attention and he treats them like men.
What did you notice about playing styles and how each program plays offense and defense during the game?
With Duke, watching practice, anytime there's an open shot, the coaches encouraged the players to take that shot. Like there were several times where practice was stopped so that they could encourage guys to take that open shot when it was there, whether it was a 2 or 3 second gap between the defense, the staff encouraged them to shoot and make plays, and that carried over to the game.
You mentioned earlier that Coach K discussed his expectations for Chase as a player if he were to play at Duke, can you outline what those expectations are?
He wouldn't put Chase in a position, he could play the 3, 4 or 5, he would expect Chase to play hard each and everytime he was on the floor. They want Chase to work on his face up game so that he's able to shoot from 3 point range and that he needs to be more consistent with that. With his inside game, his footwork, they said it's perfect, he would need to work with a strength coach, they are looking at Chase being able to add another 10-15 pounds of muscle so that he can bang down low with older kids.
If he adds that 10-15 pounds, what would that put him up to weight wise?
Right now he's at 225, so that would bring him up to between 235-240.
As you guys experienced the visit, how would you characterize your feelings about the whole Duke package?
I will say this for sure, it is a wonderful, wonderful place for a student athlete to be a part of and to be able to take a visit there, it's a great place to be, it's a wonderful place to be.
Did you and Chase's mom spend a lot of time around Chase when he was on the visit, or did they have you guys doing different stuff?
For the most part, Chase had opportunities to hang out with the players, so we kinda backed off and did our own thing, we went to a practice together and got a chance to experience that and then Chase had the opportunity to meet with Coach K one-on-one at one point, I think that was very important for Chase to be able to meet individually with the coaches because next summer, we won't be there for Chase, now is the time to have that one-on-one time with Coach K.
What kind of things was Chase bringing up to you guys during the course of the visit as you re-connected at the various points of the visit?
You know, Chase was saying that he was having some really great conversations with Coach K, he said that he really liked the way that Coach K was talking to him and how he reached out to him and he was able to break down the barrier. Like Chase had initially thought before that Coach K might be a tough guy, but what he's found is he is actually a very caring guy for his players.
Chase has identified Duke as his leader after the visit, was that a position that they already occupied before the visit, or was it something that happened during the visit that led to him saying that?
Duke was one of the top schools, it truly was, I think the visit gave Chase an opportunity to put Duke ahead of a couple other schools that he may want to look at.
For some guys on visits, when they get blown away on a visit, it can be a game-changer in their recruitment and it can lead to them changing the timetable for a commitment that they may have had previously—is that happening here with Chase after the Duke visit?
I'm trying to encourage Chase to take another visit, whether it be an official or unofficial, making a college decision, that's a big one and it's going to be one of the biggest decisions of Chase's life because that's where he's going to spend the next 4 years of his life after high school. Whether that visit to be to UCLA or Oregon, wherever he wants to take the next visit, just to make sure that he's making the right decision and whether that decision comes down to Duke or UCLA or UNLV, SC or Oregon, we just want him to be sure.
With that, what do you think is the current timetable for Chase in his recruitment in regards to making his decision?
Yes, he could make the decision a little earlier than predicted, which was the fall. It might come a lot sooner but I want him to focus on school for a little bit, he's got to take his SAT's here real quick and then he's gotta concentrate on next season.
Do you think he'll have a big press conference for his announcement, or do you guys see it being more low-key?
We're going to keep it simple, it'll be great, I don't know how the other players are doing it, but we are an easy-going family, we'll be letting people know that.
Coming out of the Duke visit, do you feel like there are any unanswered questions about Duke?
All of our questions were answered on the visit. Our basic questions were on the academic side, how would Chase fit in at Duke playing style wise and role wise. Chase has desires to get a degree in political science and he has desires to play in the NBA, so we're looking for a person that we can trust and count on when Chase is not with us, and when I talked with Coach K and his staff, I found that person.