Saturday, star point guard Derrick Rose did make that visit to Champaign and left the campus very impressed. "I liked what I saw from them, Coach Weber let's them play." said Rose.
"Only a sophomore, you can tell he will be one of the all time greats here at Simeon, just like Ben Wilson, Deon Thomas, Nick Anderson and Calvin Brock," said Smith.
Even though Smith is new in his position at Simeon Vocational High School in Chicago, he seems to be way ahead of the game, "Usually I don't allow people to come in an talk to my kids. However this year, and only this year, will I allow it. I want them to get a taste of it now, so when they are seniors they know what to expect." said Smith.
Rose will not only be the best player in the state when he's a senior but maybe in the country. Smith said one of the reasons Rose is so good is because he really understands the game and looks very comfortable running a team for such a young kid. "Derrick is good enough to know that he doesn't have to score every time down the court for us to win, he makes others better." stressed Smith.
Coach Smith is really trying to grasp all the hoopla that comes with having a star player like Rose, "It's just apart of the job Kedric, I'm trying to help my players like any coach should do."
Right now Smith doesn't allow his star player to have a "list", but schools such as Illinois, DePaul, Purdue, Marquette, Michigan St. and Kansas are all looking at him. "I can tell you right now, Illinois and DePaul will always get a look at our kids first. I'm very loyal to the state schools I can tell you that right now. Illinois has a great shot with him, they have always taken care of Simeon players." Smith said.
Look for this recruiting battle to last for a long, long time and for the Illinois coaching staff to be right there in the thick of things.