Nichols Talks UMD, Planning Visits

HYATTSVILLE, Md. -- When we interviewed Kipper Nichols (St. Edward HS/Lakewood, Ohio) a few weeks ago, he had been contacted by Maryland. Shortly thereafter, he received an offer from the Terps. We spoke to Nichols at the Ty Lawson & Victor Oladipo All-American Camp this week to get the latest on his recruitment.

HYATTSVILLE, Md. -- When we interviewed Kipper Nichols (St. Edward HS, Lakewood, OH) a few weeks ago, he had been contacted by Maryland. Shortly thereafter, he received an offer from the Terps. We spoke to Nichols at the Ty Lawson & Victor Oladipo All-American Camp this week to get the latest on his recruitment.

"It's really all the coaches," said Nichols, when asked who was his primary recruiter. "I've spoken to Coach Bino (Ranson), but Coach (Mark) Turgeon has been in contact with me as well. I have some family with me here (at the camp at DeMatha), and we might stop over at the campus while we're here, although I realize the coaches may be on the road."

In watching Nichols, we saw a strong, yet smooth operator on the floor.

"I'm still working on my jumper," said Nichols. "It's improved, but I'm probably still more of a mid-range guy at the moment. Once July is over, I'll go back in the gym and put up more shots. As that part of my game improves, I think my stock will go up. I'm a little bit of a late bloomer I guess. I had a big game versus Carlton Bragg (a top 15 national player), and the word got out about me. I think Maryland either was at that game, or they got a video of that game. That's what spurred their interest in me, and how I received the offer."

After a couple more July camps, Nichols will get down to the business of selecting schools to officially visit.

"I haven't got a final list yet, but Xavier, Dayton, Maryland, Penn State, and Northwestern are some schools that I hope to visit," said Nichols. "They've all extended offers. My mom would kind of like me to stay close to home, but it's my decision. It will depend on the fit. My family will support me either way.

"I have already begun thinking about majors and things like that. Engineering is a possibility, but that's tough and very time consuming. I am also looking at sports medicine, or sports marketing. The academics are big to me, so that, combined with the coaches and overall program, will determine where I wind up."

Nichols, was aware of Maryland's pursuit of fellow Ohioan Esa Ahmad.

"Oh yeah, Esa and I have been playing against each other for years," said Nichols. "I know Maryland is one of the teams going after him hard. He's a really good friend, and we talk about recruiting from time to time. Growing up in Ohio, it's hard to turn down Ohio State, but each player has to do what's in his best interest. I think we'll both take that philosophy into whatever decision we eventually make."

We'll have to wait and see how hard the Terps push for Nichols, but this young man has it all together, on and off the court. He's extremely well spoken, outgoing, and has plenty of basketball skills. He'll do well wherever he winds up. A November decision is expected.

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