Mitchell still solid on Tigers

University of Memphis coach Larry Porter's biggest competition for Carl Mitchell isn't any neighboring SEC school.

University of Memphis coach Larry Porter's biggest competition for Carl Mitchell isn't any neighboring SEC school.

It's Mitchell's mother, Jada.

Mitchell, along with his Wooddale teammate Daniel Hurd, committed to Memphis in July. He chose the Tigers over Tennessee and Ole Miss, among plenty of others.

He said Sunday he's still solid on that commitment, but that his mom is encouraging him to venture outside of Memphis.

"My mom's telling me to weigh my options," Mitchell said. "She's telling me to get out and experience something besides Memphis.

"I do want to stay at home, but my mom's telling me she wants me to get away from home. I don't know. I'm really — I don't know yet."

Because of the Tigers' on-field struggles this season — they're 2-6 entering the tough stretch of their Conference USA slate — Mitchell said he's being pulled in several different directions.

He talked to Porter as recently as last week, and the schools that recruited him before he committed surely haven't relented. Mitchell said he understands that his mother simply only wants the best for him.

"I'm trying to do what's best for me," Mitchell said. "Mom's going to put her opinion in anyway, but at the end of the day, it's my decision."

Mitchell said the Tigers' current results concern him slightly, but that he didn't expect an instantaneous turnaround.

"Porter just got here. It's going to take some years to start a program, to build a program," Mitchell said. "You can't just come in and start winning. You've got to build something."

Mitchell said he respects that Porter, a Memphis alum, is focusing his efforts on revitalizing the program.

"I still want to go to Memphis," Mitchell said. "He's trying to make a change, and I feel like I could fit straight in with that change. I'm still pretty strong with Memphis."

Still, it's tough to count Mom out. Mitchell said he intends to visit Ole Miss and Tennessee —and possibly Auburn — after his season ends.

Mitchell said of course he'll listen to the advice his Mom offers but that he won't base his ultimate decision — to go to Memphis or anywhere else — on others.

"Mom's always giving me advice, you know," Mitchell said. "Either I take it or I don't. It's up to me."


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