Jeter: "By spring, that'll be it for me"

Following his trip to Durham, five star big man Chase Jeter has come up with some solid opinions and an outline of when he expects to make a decision. He spoke about both with TDD recently.

Are you all the way recuperated from all this travel you've had the past few weeks ?

Chase Jeter: I wouldn't say fully yet, but I'm getting closer, have to get back into the swing of things with my workouts.

What's a typical workout look like this days?

I do a lot of stuff, a lot of mid-range shots, a lot of movement from the mid-range so that when I get the ball in the mid-post, I can face the basket and use my footwork and do different stuff with that. At the end of my workouts I usually work on explosion to the basket and to the rim so I can work on my touch and finish around the rim, plus I always shoot a lot of free throws.

It's interesting you mentioned footwork, do you do a lot of drills to work on those skills in those workouts?

Yeah a lot of time I do, usually my footwork isn't the main focal point, it's a fluid part of the workout, like I'll work on explosive and fluid first steps, either going to the basket or if I'm doing a post move, taking a dribble with my back to the basket and then stepping through, my footwork is always incorporated somehow into my workouts.

For you, what's your go-to moves on the perimeter or in the post?

If I catch the ball on the perimeter, I'm just going to take at least one explosive move or dribble towards the basket, and if there's a guy guarding that move for a charge, but if I'm getting the ball in the post, if it's in the mid-post, I'll turn around and do a quick face-up move towards the basket, something quick. My go-to move usually is to go over the left shoulder to a jump hook in the post.

Are you working on anything move wise as you prepare to be a college player in a few years?

Yeah, we've been extending, and this is in my workouts, I'm not going to come out next AAU season shooting a ton of 3s and just being a perimeter guy, but in my workouts I've been extending my range and moves on the perimeter so I can be able to do the dribble drive and if I'm ever cut off by somebody trying to take a charge, I'm working on my drop step or spin move in the opposite direction away from the defender, that's what I've been working on lately.

What did it look like for you this past HS season as a versatile big playing off Stephen Zimmerman, how did you two work together?

Oh yeah, there was a chance for me every single day in practice to get better by playing against him, a chance to get ready for college, I got a good feel for someone my size to go up and compete against.

Let's switch gears, what went into the decision to have Duke be your first official visit?

At the time when my parents suggested it, I was a little shocked and surprised, but then as I really thought about it, the timing was perfect, it was the week after my state championships, and it would have given me a great chance to see a program that I could see myself playing in and it would give me a chance to check out the campuses and check out the coaches, playing style, they had a really great game. It kinda, timing wise it was almost perfect with the way my season ended. It was surprising to me that they suggested it because of how early it was in my junior season to be taking an official visit, so I think when my parents asked me about it, I thought about it for a couple of hours and already knew it was the right thing to do.

What were the reasons for your parents thinking it was a good idea to take the first official visit so early?

I think they wanted me to get one of my official visits underway, they thought it might help smooth out my recruiting process a little bit because I've already been on a lot of unofficials to a lot of the schools that I had wanted to see to schools that I could see myself fitting in at, an official visit to somewhere not as close, usually we take the unofficials to schools that are more close to home, so taking one to a school a little bit further away, it was an ideal for my parents and it was ideal for me as well.

It was reported recently that you felt like your process had sped up and that you might be closer to a commitment than previously thought, what led you to speed up your process?

Yeah, that was actually less than a month ago, I actually kind of thought this week, I was always thinking fall before my senior year, but after the visit, I'm most likely to take one or two more visits at the max and then I think I'll be making my decision then, maybe late April. I think the opportunities I've had to take unofficial visits to Oregon, Arizona, UCLA throughout the year, that really helped and then the Duke visit, that really helped as well, so I'm figuring one or two official visits, that might be enough, that might be good for me to take and see and from there, I can start to get down to it and make my decision.

Are you planning on taking your last official visits to schools you haven't visited before, or are you leaning towards taking them to places you have already visited unofficially?

Most likely schools that I haven't, if I were to re-visit a school I've visited before, it most likely would be UCLA, just because that one was awhile ago, so it may be interesting to see what's going on there, check it out to see how they are working over there.

Do you already have a good idea about what schools you are considering for those last official visits?

No, I'm not really sure about that actually. I still have to think about it.

Now that you are removed from being on campus at Duke, how do you think you are feeling now about them as opposed to how you felt immediately after the visit?

I had strong feelings for them coming off the weekend and now I still do, I think they have a great shot in the tournament and they have a really great recruiting class coming in, I think their future is exciting and I feel like, it'd also be a really good fit for me and I can really see myself playing there. Once again, it'll all depend on when I'm ready and I will know when I am.

What did you see or experience on the visit that led you to think that Duke is a good fit for you?

You know the campus is great, but the opportunities that come with it, I'd have connections for life. The way that Coach K recruits, kinda in a special way, a lot of schools, they will offer any guys that are ranked, but Coach K hand-selects which guys he wants to recruits, that's kinda unique. Along with that I'd say that education, the highest education you can get in the nation of academics and basketball is there, and that's pretty good too.

Is there anything from the visit that still stands out to you in anyway?

Yeah, the Cameron Crazies, I got to go sit with the Cameron Crazies and that was really cool, that was what really stood out, I mean, a lot of things stood out, but that's probably one thing that I will never forget. First off, the atmosphere of the game is just really crazy, and then I got to go sit with the fans and they were all really welcoming people, it was just really fun, a really good time.

What was it like for you being around the other recruits that were on visits at the same time with you?

It was cool, we got a chance to hang out both before and after the game, we actually exchanged information and we keep in touch now after we've left campus. We chilled with guys like Justise and others and it'll be nice next year when they are there to have guys to confide in and along with that, I got a chance to meet Luke Kennard, I had played against him before, we met, now me and him are pretty cool. Oh yeah, me and Myles Turner we both knew each other going in, I think it was cool seeing him there and seeing him having fun on his official visit. The Cameron Crazies are some of the best fans in college basketball, so we figured why not take some selfies while were there for Instagram too.

Aside from interacting with the fans, what were your observations of watching Duke play offense and defense?

What I liked about it, and when I say this, I say this with humility, I'm not trying to boost myself up by saying this, there wasn't really a player like me on the floor for Duke or North Carolina. I feel like my versatility could really help that program and I also could do really well for myself there.

That versatility you mentioned as a player, was that a topic of discussion with Coach K and the Duke Staff as you discussed potential role at Duke?

Yeah, it was. Coach K was saying that down the road, he sees me not just playing a 4, but also maybe playing a little bit of 3, possibly in college and even in the NBA, which is one of main goals. The way he discussed what the key to my progression and development as a player is really being able to face up to the basket, hitting jump shots and taking guys to the rack.

How did you react to Coach K's pitch as you guys discussed your potential role and how you'd be developed there?

I was just envisioning it all you know, and I was listening to really try and figure out, is this a good fit for me. I'd be able to, after listening to him, that I could be a good fit there, I can envision myself playing there.

The other aspects of campus life there, what were your thoughts?

The people, there's a lot of really cool, nice, genuine people out there. I thought that was really cool because a lot of those people, those students are used to being elite in the classroom and whatever sports they play, so their students were all really cool on campus, it was even better than I expected. It was interesting, I liked the campus.

How do you compare/contrast what you saw on the Duke campus versus what you've experienced on other campuses you've visited?

Most of the schools are usually like one central location, but Duke's campus, there's West Campus, Central Campus and East Campus. East Campus was where the freshman stay including the basketball freshman which I thought was very interesting. I kinda liked that.

  You mentioned hanging out with Luke Kennard on the visit, what kind of connection have you guys made now that you have both visited at the same time?

Yeah, we more so kinda just hung out more than discuss college decisions. It was more talking about our lives, our choices for college, stuff like that.

What kind of questions did you have for the Duke staff going in that you got addressed?

Availability to the practice facility 24/7, I asked a lot of questions about the strength and conditioning program, I was able to talk with the strength staff about that which was good. I asked about manager availability when someone wanted to play and work out, all of those things were provided and the strength and conditioning program was impressive for me.

What was impressive about that?

Their team, how they made the system work for their players to help them get better with functional movements and explosive techniques and really building your body stronger without giving up anything like flexibility and how they talked about building the right kind of reps and improving on things with your function. Like they mentioned that there's no improvement in dysfunction, they are geared towards improving your mobility and your functionality on the court. It's definitely going to benefit any player that's a part of it, it's going to prevent injury, strengthen the body with a lot of the things they focus on.

What were your thoughts on the practice facility?

The thing I loved about it was just how connected it was to everything that's basketball related, so you have the locker room, players lounge, Cameron Indoor, it's all connected, the coaches' offices, even the academic center is right above the practice facility, so everything was connected, that's what I liked about it.

You mentioned getting to meet some of the recruits on the visit with you, did you form any relationships with current team members during the visit?

Yeah, me and Jahlil, we kinda like got to hang out a lot more than we had been able to before when we were at USA Basketball stuff. Me and Jahlil got a chance to hang out more than a basketball camp enables you to do, we became better friends during the trip and we've been keeping in touch with each other since the trip too. We're good friends, he's a real cool guy and he's a great player too, so he's someone that I'll be able to look to for advice and insight on what it's like while he's there. We talked a lot about life during the visit, he definitely thinks highly of Duke though.

Now that you've had the visit and occasion to further the relationship with Coach K, can you shed some light on how you feel like the relationship has progressed to this point from when it first started?

I think we both, both of us have a mutual respect for each other, mine probably much greater than his in regard to his history, how great a coach he is. I really feel like, we both have a great respect for each other as player and coach, that will continue to develop, but at this point, I feel like we have a good relationship.

What is it that you have come to respect about him?

He's really a strong person and coach and I have always wanted the opportunity to play for a strong coach, that's what I've liked about him but also, he's a really great person. He's got a great family and there's great people around him.

Your dad mentioned after the visit that him and your mom are looking for a coach that they can trust to lookout for you once you go to college and he felt like he found that coach in Coach K, is that something you agree with?

I feel the same in the sense that he's going to look out for me, but I also don't think he's saying that because he wants the coach to baby me or anything like that, once you are in college, it's part of growing up and maturing, so I feel like that's part of my dad being a good parent in wanting to make sure that whatever coach is my coach is going to take care of me and help me grow. I'll be in the right hands because wherever I go, I'm going to make sure I'm in the right hands with the coaches' and that I'm well taken care of and that I'm playing well and getting a good education. It definitely sounds like something that my dad or my mom would say about how they feel about him from a parent's point of view.

Do you feel like you have any unanswered questions about Duke now that the visit is completed?

I'm pretty satisfied with what I learned, it will be interesting to see how they cap off their season and how they end it. I'm excited for March Madness to see how everything ends up with conference tournaments, it's going to be interesting to see what happens there.

Is that a big component of your evaluation of the schools recruiting you, how they do in their conference tournaments and the Big Dance?

I mean, I feel like, one of the coaches that always tells me is that how you are treated when you get to a school is how you are treated when you are recruited, so I feel like some schools who have shown strong interest in me and are after me with their communication and how many times they've visited me, I feel like all of those things about how I was recruited indicate to me how I will be treated when I get there. Not in the same regard as like high school in that everything is hyped up, but when you get to college, you gotta just starting playing because the hype isn't always there and it's competitive, and in most situations, I feel like I've been recruited hard and the coaches care and they have shown me strong interest in me.

Who has done a good job in your estimation of working hard to build that relationship with you through the recruiting process and what you just described?

The best with those have been Duke, Arizona, and Oregon, I'd say if I had a top five, they'd most likely be in it, they are the ones who are recruiting me the hardest and they are the ones that I have the closest relationship with the coaches.

Arizona's gained a lot of recognition now for several years for how hard and competitively they recruit guys…

Yeah, they have basketball guys for sure and for me, I'm a naturally competitive guy, so having to battle, it's not like a turnoff, that's probably not the best word, it's not a deal-breaker for me that they have guys on the roster, because I know I'm capable, I have ability and I'm capable of becoming the main guy and I have the work ethic and the time to become that guy, but that doesn't really affect me.

Out of all the schools recruiting you, do you feel like any present the opportunity for you to be able to compete to be the main guy on that team?

Yeah, I'd say Arizona just because of the way they recruit, how hard they work for the guys they really want, I know how hard they work for them and if I were to end up there, that would be a good competitive system for me to get ready for the season during my freshman season.

Do you have an opinion on what you think the situation is like at Duke during your freshman year if you were to go there with what you just discussed about Arizona?

It looks a little bit different, just because, going in, I see a lot of guys, a lot of the main guys, like Jahlil, he's most likely one-and-done, I'd say from a competitive standpoint, Amile Jefferson would be there, he would be a senior at that time, so that would be a good way for me to compete and deal with adversity and learn, so that's the difference I see, there's probably a guy or two there wheras with Arizona, it looks like some of the guys there now may not be there if I went there.

Is one situation more appealing than the other in your mind?

I feel like with both opportunities, I'm competing for a spot, playing time is naturally going to be earned, I don't view either as deal-breakers, but I'm sure as I progress in my evaluation, one may become more appealing than the other in terms of long-term, getting better as a player. I'll pick the right choice for my development.

What's the big factors for you that you will likely be examining as you move towards the decision?

The environment, the atmosphere, playing style, what the program is like, the opportunity there for players and their development, stuff like that.

To wrap up, how do you see the final process unfolding for you?

I think by spring, I think that'll be it for me, I'll likely be done by then. If for any reason it happens to be in the fall then so be it, but I really don't see myself going that long.

If it does extend into the fall, what do you think would be the big reasons behind waiting?

Probably not getting a chance to see other places.

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