When Darrell Arthur decided to wait until the late signing period to make a college decision, he had to have known he’d receive plenty of attention. Not only would schools like Baylor, Indiana, Kansas, SMU and others continue to recruit him with fervor, but newspapers, scouts and online outlets would want to talk to him to see what’s going on. For the most part, the six-foot-nine inch forward from Dallas (Texas) South Oak Cliff has let his high school coach James Mays or his summer coach Jazzy Hartwell do his talking for him.
It isn’t that he’s trying to be rude or doesn’t want to talk, the fact is Arthur is genuinely quiet and shy. However, the talented big man recently opened up during a sit down interview.
“I’m just real shy,” Arthur told Phog.net. “I don’t really like talking that much, I never have.”
Given his status as one of the most highly regarded hoops prospects in the country, Arthur is often the target of opposing players and fans who want to trash talk. Even though the taunts can get rather personal at times, he just shrugs them off and lets his play talk for him.
“As long as we’re up, I don’t really think anything of it,” says Arthur of trash talking opponents or fans. “I just try to put up a couple of points or make some plays, I don’t really talk back.”
While he prefers to remain quiet on and off the court, Arthur is a keen observer of what goes on around him and that is part of why he chose to remain open. After hearing all sorts of overtures and promises from his potential college choices, he wanted to be sure their play this season was in line with what he was being told.
In fact, Arthur recently completed an unofficial trip to Indiana after visiting them officially during the fall.
“It was fun to watch Indiana and Duke, the crowd was really good,” said Arthur of his recent trip to Bloomington. “I just wanted to see how the coach did in a real game. I also wanted to get an idea of how they really play and what their guys can do.”
According to Arthur, he’ll be taking another unofficial visit as soon as a date can be scheduled. However, this time he’ll make a return trip to Lawrence.
“I think I’m going to take one (visit) to Kansas, maybe in the next month or so,” said Arthur. “My AAU coach is getting a schedule so we can look at it and set a date.”
Speaking of coaches, Arthur admits that both his high school and summer coaches will be looked to for guidance in the decision making process. He’s grown to trust and value both Mays’ and Hartwell’s opinions and they will be part of a tight inner circle that will also include Arthur and his mother.
One member of that circle’s opinion will matter a little more though.
“My mom’s, for sure,” says Arthur of whose opinion he values most. “She just wants me to make the best decision for me. She doesn’t care if I go away or stay home, she wants me to pick the best place for me.”
Having grown almost an inch since the end of summer and bulked up to 225 pounds, Arthur feels good physically and his game is coming along. He is cat quick in the post, steps out for effortless jumpers all the way to the three point line and has significantly improved his ball handling. He’s also a very good defender.
“Right now my strengths are rebounding and blocking shots,” said Arthur. “I think I play tight D and I take pride in it. I have a contest with one of my guards to see who can make the most steals.”
For now, Arthur will focus on his senior season and will likely wait until it finishes before making a decision. He also wants people to know that just because he’s quiet doesn’t mean he isn’t driven. In fact, he’s all about winning and desperately wants to defend the state championship he and his teammates won last year.
“I just hate to lose, I hate it,” says Arthur when asked what he most wants people to know about him. “If I lose, you probably won’t hear anything out of me for at least a day or two because it bothers me. Winning motivates me.”