Tatum Working Toward Greatness

Jayson Tatum says he's been consistent, but wants to be great this summer. And, in the interim, he's fielding daily interest from his final four schools.

Houston -- Five-star wing Jayson Tatum is having a strong spring with the St. Louis Eagles in the Nike EYBL and he caught up with TDD to talk about his spring and his recruitment.

Through three sessions of play, Tatum is averaging 22.2 points, 8.2 rebounds and 2 assists per game leading the league in made and attempted free throws. The Eagles also sit at 9-3 on the season and are looking good to make it to Peach Jam in July.

"I've been consistent. I haven't played great. I've been consistent, though. There's always room for improvement," Tatum told TDD.


Being a top-five national prospect has meant that Tatum has had to face a lot of double and triple teams this spring to force the ball out his hands. It's something he's had to adjust to nearly every single games and teams have started to focus entire defenses geared towards stopping him.

"Yeah I've noticed it a lot more this year than last year. Coming off of a ball screen every time you get doubled. In the post every time I get doubled," Tatum said. "It makes it harder to score, but I can try to work around that."

Since he's such a versatile and well-rounded player, Tatum is trying to work on all facets of the game while also trying to get some time in the weight room to improve his athleticism.

"Really just improving in all areas. Trying to be a better scorer. Being more efficient. Attack better," Tatum said. "Really just trying to be in the weight room lately. Trying to get bigger, more explosive."

As for the recruiting process, Tatum is taking things slowly now that he's cut his list to more schools. He's already been to Duke for an official visit earlier in the year and doesn't have any other official visits planned -- although its not out of the question.

Tatum's official visit to Duke was a great chance for him to get the experience of being on campus and seeing everything that the Blue Devils have to offer.

"I had a good time. I didn't know what to expect with my first time visiting a college on an official visit, especially Duke. I had a good time out there," Tatum said. "Hanging out with the team, seeing the facilities, talking to the coaches. It was a good time."

On the visit, Tatum came in with an open mind since he hadn't taken an official visit before. He listened to the Duke coaches talk about his potential development track and how they've done great things with other talented players.

"The great players that have come through there and how they've developed," Tatum said about what the Duke coaches said to him. "Whether it's one year or four years. How the guys love the program and they love playing for Coach K."

Now that Tatum has cut his list to four schools he said that contact from those four schools occurs every single day. He'll usually get a steady stream of texts throughout the day for the four schools that are still involved with him.

"That's kind of why I cut my list. I got used to it over the years, but sometimes, you just have to study and work on your school work and coaches are texting you," Tatum said.

As for what he's looking for that will help him make a decision? Tatum wants to be pushed by his future coaching staff to help make him a great player.

"What coaching staff I'm most comfortable with, on and off the court," Tatum said. "I know that will push me in practice and games so that I can be the best version of me."


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