Jarreau Talks Recruiting And Elfrid Payton

HOUSTON — Unlike most of his peers, Class of 2016 four-star combo guard DeJon Jarreau spent last weekend playing in front of his NBA role model for Elfrid Payton Elite on the third stop of the Nike EYBL.

The 6-foot-5 Jarreau, who attends McDonogh 35 High in New Orleans, bounced back from a hip injury Saturday to score 12 points in E.P. Elite’s win over Spiece Indy Heat and 20 points in a loss to St. Louis Eagles.

E.P. Elite is sponsored by Payton, an all-state guard at John Ehret High in metro New Orleans before becoming a college star at Louisiana and finishing fourth in this season’s NBA Rookie of the Year voting with the Orlando Magic.

“He’s had a big impact on me because he’s been through all this stuff before and knows what it takes to play in college and make it to the NBA,” Jarreau told the Cajun Redzone on Saturday. “It’s huge to be able to interact with him. He’s a role model and big brother to me.”

Rated the nation’s No. 65 recruit in his class, Jarreau picked up offers Monday from Texas, Mississippi State and Murray State. His other reported offers are from UMass, Washington, the Ragin’ Cajuns, UNO, Oklahoma, Tulsa, Southeastern Louisiana, Memphis, Louisiana Tech, Boston College, Oral Roberts, Northwestern State, Tulane, Miami (Fla.), Oklahoma State, Temple, UTEP and Northwest Florida.

“It’s big,” Jarreau said of his newest offers. “Those are big-time programs. The fact they notice me and want me to come and play for their team is huge.”

According to Jarreau, college coaches have plenty of good things to say about him and his game. As a junior he made the Class 4A all-state first team after scoring 17 points per game and leading McDonogh 35 to the state semifinals. The long, quick playmaker is averaging 10.1 points, two assists and 1.5 steals and shooting 47 percent from 3-point range during the EYBL.

“They say I’m a long, lanky defender and can deflect balls,” Jarreau said. “I can run the team well and can blow by defenders and make open shots, get to the goal and I have good court vision.”

Jarreau has yet to narrow down his list of schools, but he’s ready to make some visits later this summer.

“I’m probably going to take some visits in late June,” he said. “Two of them will probably be Boston College and UMass and probably Miami.”

As for the Cajuns, Jarreau said their coaching staff has stayed in regular contact with him throughout the recruiting process.

“They’re always hitting me up and asking me how I’m doing,” Jarreau said. “It’s a good school. You can look at Elfrid Payton and see that they can get people to the league. It doesn’t matter how big or small the school is. They’re a good school and I like them a lot.”

When it comes to making his college choice, Jarreau plans to wait until the start of the upcoming prep season.

“I want to play a little my senior year, then I’m going to sign,” Jarreau said. “The school needs to have good academics. I want to study sports management. I also want a school that’s going to run the pick-and-roll because that’s my favorite thing and do a little bit of iso.”

Last weekend Jarreau also received an invitation to the Nike Basketball Academy to be held June 26-30 in Santa Monica, California.

“That’s a big accomplishment,” he said. “It really shocked me. I just know I’ve got to go out there and perform.”

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