EYB: Henry Ellenson talks Duke offer

Wisconsin big man Henry Ellenson appeared on the Duke radar earlier this spring and has quickly earned an offer. We spoke with the four star prospect on Saturday to find out what is new with his recruitment, where the early process stands with the Blue Devils, and much more.

What were your thoughts on today's two games at the EYB?

Henry Ellenson: First game it was rough, we didn't come out to play I think, but second game tonight went real well, we had a team meeting this afternoon and all the guys said we needed to pick it up, be more aggressive and I thought we did that in the second game. 

With your size Henry most people would assume you are a power forward but you play a different style it seems, how would you describe your game?

I'm a guy that likes to find mismatches. If I have a big on me I like to shoot the ball, but if I've got a smaller guy on me, I like to take him down in the post. I just like to be versatile. 

if I asked you if you compare playing style wise to anybody in college or the pros, is there anybody that you would point to and say you've tried to model your game in a similar fashion after?

I do, I have a favorite player…I really like Carmelo Anthony a lot. I just like how he plays all over the court, he goes inside, he goes outside, he does it all, I just really like how he plays. I even watched him during the Olympics, I thought he did a good job for them, making shots, he scored a record in one games I think.

Duke's a school that's been recruiting you and obviously Coach K has coached the USA Team, is that something that's a topic of discussion with him when he's talked with you and your family?

Yeah he's talked about just the opportunities you would have at Duke to get to the next level and he's talked about USA Basketball and what the experience has been like.

What's been your reaction to that discussion?

It's impressive…it's very impressive to be recruited by a guy like that.

How are you handling the explosion in recruiting interest you've had this year?

  It's really about just not trying to worry about too much. I'm trying to make sure it's not the biggest, most important thing in my life, and I just worry about focusing on the court, everything else will take care of itself.

What kind of questions are you asking the coaches that you personally are talking to?

Just their playing style, obviously academics are a big thing and talking about where they see me playing in their offense, that's a big thing for me, where they see me playing in their system. I know I don't want to go to a school where they will just stick me in the post, I want to be able to play all over, that's probably the biggest thing.

Is there anybody's pitch that you have really responded to so far?

The schools that have visited my house over the last few months. Each of those, in my opinion, have had some good things to say.

Which schools visited?

Marquette had a house visit, Iowa State, Michigan State and Duke was up at my high school. It was Coach K. It was good, he had good things to say and he told me to keep working hard.

Was that the first time you had in person contact with a member of the Duke staff?

Oh not at all. Coach Nate James had come up during my season and he's been talking to me a lot, that's the first time that I had talked to Coach K, however.

Did Coach K give you a firm, committable scholarship offer when you and him met in person?

No, he didn't during the visit. However, the next day he did make a firm, comittable offer.

What's your thoughts on the Duke situation now that they have offered you and you've been in communication with Coach K?

It's a good situation for versatile players, and they obviously are good at getting guys to the league which is a big thing for me. 

How much are you looking at who schools are recruiting and potential depth charts?

I'm still really open with all this stuff, because it's so early. I'm just kinda looking at everything and thinking it out. Right now I'm not going to rush into anything, because I don't want to close any doors.

How do you see the process moving forward, what's the next steps?

I don't know, we'll see. Right now there's time, so I'm not quite sure where we go from here.

From the looks of it your parents are playing an active role in your recruitment, are you really going to lean on how they feel about schools as you figure out how you feel about them?

Yeah they have good insight on stuff, they've been through it with my brother before and they played as well, so they really get this kind of stuff. They will tell me what the positives and negatives are with each school that they talk to and they are helping me out. 

Since you said it's early, can I assume you haven't progressed to planning visits so far?

No, I haven't planned anything yet. I think i'm going to take my trips this fall. 

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