James talks favorites

Joell James, a four-star center from Palm Beach (FL) Dwyer, who will have an opportunity to prove he's one of the top big men in the nation this week at the NBA Top 100 Camp in Charlottesville, Va., spoke with InsideTheVille.com about his favorites.

Joell James, a four-star center from Palm Beach (FL) Dwyer, will have an opportunity to prove he's one of the top big men in the nation this week at the NBA Top 100 Camp in Charlottesville, Va.

James, 6'10, 280, told InsideTheVille.com Wednesday afternoon that Louisville, West Virginia, Florida, Florida State, Maryland, Miami, UCF and Ohio State have prioritized him at the center position in the Class of 2012.

Which programs are currently standing out to James?

"I'm really interested in North Carolina, but they haven't offered yet," James said. "North Carolina, Florida, Florida State and West Virginia, those are the ones that are really sticking out to me right now. The Top 5 is Florida, Florida State, Ohio State, West Virginia and UNC."

Louisville is also involved. Richard Pitino was recruiting James while at Florida, and has continued to recruit him since moving back to Louisville.

"He was recruiting me at Florida and he's recruiting me now at Louisville," James said. "[Louisville Director of Basketball Operations] Mark Lieberman was my travel team coach so he's been recruiting me. I've always thought of the program as a pretty good program. They've been talking to me and decided to offer me and I'm considering it."

James visited Miami several times last season, and plans to check out in-state programs Florida and Florida State this summer. He also wants to visit a few out of state schools in August.

"I'm trying to set up visits to Ohio State, Louisville and West Virginia," James said.

James doesn't appear rushed to make a decision. He's planning to make several official visits in the fall before choosing a school.

"I'm definitely going to take official visits," James said. "You can talk to coaches, but you've really got to get that feeling when you visit a school. I just want to wait, visit schools and make my decision from there."

Several factors will help James sort out his decision, including early playing time and a program that will help him reach his potential.

"Education, playing time, and stability of the coaching staff are important," James said. "[My brother] said I should go to a place where I can develop and become a draft pick."

With a couple week before college coaches can evaluate prospects, James wants to show he can go hard for an extended period of time.

"I really want to [show] the effort I give on the court," James said. "I'm trying to go out and play as hard as I can play and do what I do best, hustle. I've been working on more of a face-up game, and pull-up bank shot."


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