Antonio Drummond, affectionally called "Bobo," makes no secret of his interest in the University of Illinois. The Illini may be looking for a point guard in 2012, and there are a number of them in the state that class. Drummond hopes to single himself out.
"Yeah, that's why I continue to work hard. Hopefully it will be me."
Point guard is a difficult position. He is learning the nuances of the assignment the more he plays.
"I think it's improving more and more because I'm learning new things every time I play. I think my point guard skills are getting better."
Most point guards are either passers or shooters, but the best ones do both. Drummond admits knowing when to do what is the toughest part. But after playing up with the 17 and Under Illinois Wolves AAU team last year and now with his own 16U class has helped.
"It was a hard thing, but playing with the 17's and now playing with the 16's, that taught me a lot. I now know when to shoot and when to set up others. I think I learned a lot early, so now it's just gotten easier."
Last year, Drummond passed up open scoring opportunities in favor of his teammates, calling into question his offensive game. But he is much more confident in his own game now.
"I play with my own age group now, so that opened up my offensive game a lot. I show people I can play offense now. Last year I had a lot more offensive weapons, so I could set them up. Now, they look for me to score more. I've shown the coaches I can do that.
"I was deferring a lot of shots. But now, this is more like my team. When I've got shots, I take them and knock them down.
He has worked hard to perfect his outside shot.
"I think things are going pretty well so far. I worked real hard on my jump shot. So that will open up the rest of my game."
Drummond is 5'-10", so he must develop assets to counter his lack of height.
"I'm lifting weights to get stronger because I'm not the tallest. I need some type of advantage."
How would he describe himself as a player?
"I'm a leader. I can create for myself, and I can also create for others. I'm a true point guard."
He is considering a transfer to a prep school (Wilbraham & Monson Academy in Massachusetts) to improve his academic standing. If he remains in Peoria, he feels his Central team will be strong this year.
"We're combined with Woodruff now, so we should be pretty good. We'll probably be the team to beat in our area."
Drummond is trying to keep recruiting on the back burner for now.
"The schools that are looking at me the most right now are Illinois, Bradley, SIU-Edwardsville...I can't think of them off the top of my head. There are plenty of teams, but I don't really think about it too much. There's plenty of time."
He will play college ball somewhere, but there is little doubt he would prefer to do it at Illinois.