PHILADELPHIA, Pa. -- Someday Danjel Purifoy wants to study archeology at college.It's something his mother turned him onto and he's run with it.
For Terps hoops fans, they could certainly dig it if the four-star, top 50 Hargrave (Va.) Military-bound standout small forward were to pursue his academic first-love at College Park.
"It's just something my mom got me started in and I have decided it's my future course," Purifoy said.
After leading his Breakaway squad to a 67-65 win over MMG July 9 on the first day of action at the Reebok Breakout Classic at Philadelphia University, with Terps assistant coach and lead recruiter Bino Ranson courtside looking on, the powerful yet sleek Purifoy broke down why he has been listing Maryland atop his leader board for the last month or so. The Alabama native is headed to Hargrave next month to fine-tune his game as well as enhance his academics.
"My [Atlanta X-Press] AAU team, basically," the 6-6 Purifoy said of the exposure he earned there and Maryland seeing him early. "And after my first year they [Maryland] started coming to the school watching us play, work out, and that's how it all started. They contact me on social media and stuff like that and they tell me they want me there. And I have two players there that I know very well, Trayvon Redd and Robert Carter."
Purifoy backed up his national ranking July 9 with a 13-point, 8-rebound, 2-steal and 2-assist debut, on a night he shot 5-for-7 from the field and 3-of-3 from the free-throw line while playing about half the game. And he did just about it all on the floor, both inside and out, while teamed with Top 10 center Diamond Stone from Milwaukee, Wisc. (11 points).
Purifoy crashed hard and started the break, nailed deep jumpers from the corner, and crossed-over players on the perimeter while creating his shot and slashing to the bucket. The athletic finisher also looked for his teammates and got on the floor a few times fighting for loose balls for good measure. The motor never stopped as if he wasn't rebounding his was getting tips and deflections.
He broke down his game and the Terps afterwards.
"Yeah, Maryland is still number one with me. But I don't know yet when I am going to decide but I just want it to be a surprise. But it will probably be after the season," Purifoy said. "But it's just everything, the things that I hear about Maryland. My mom says it's a real good school, my dad says it's a real good school. And since I got Robert [Carter] and Trayvon [Reed] there, that's how I know it is true. [Specifically], it's like playing with their teammates, and how they all fit in, I mean, Robert just got there, it's his first year, and he's already in love with the program."
Purifoy said Michigan and Minnesota are the two latest to join his lengthy offer list. He has no current plans to visit any colleges the rest of the summer, as he's busy with local tournaments in Atlanta with the X-Press, and then off to Las Vegas to end the July open period. He showed his diverse and powerful game last night before a packed house.
"Inside I play mostly," Purifoy said of his game. "Like getting the rebound, getting the ball up the court, and getting my teammates involved and stuff like that."
Purifoy hasn't been to Maryland's campus yet, but said he hopes to soon if he can schedule it. Meanwhile, he saw Carter three weeks ago and keeps up with both him and Reed regularly. He also likes the Big Ten move,
"And that's another thing I can see, me playing in the Big Ten with them," Purifoy said. "In college I can be a '3' and a '2,' I have been working on that outside range, my jumper a lot as you saw tonight."
Purifoy Has Terps Up Top
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