U-M Takes Another Positive Step with Booker

Moss Point (MS) guard Devin Booker and his dad made their way to Ann Arbor for the most electric game of Michigan's season. And while the game ended in disappointment for the Maize & Blue, the positive impression made by John Beilein & company was nonetheless positive.

It’s been an exciting couple of months for Devin Booker. The level of intrigue around the Moss Point, MS combo guard’s recruitment increased exponentially after the recent addition of Duke and North Carolina to his offer sheet.  The presence of the traditional powers has caused some to suggest his recruiting picture has been shaken up, but the ever calm youngster insists he is taking the newfound attention in stride.

Said Booker, “I don’t want to say (the new offers) ‘shake it up.’ Obviously I’m going to give them a look because they’re two powerhouse schools… legendary schools, but it all comes down to whatever school best fits me. I mean, if the school doesn’t fit me, I can’t just go off the reputation of the school.”

That’s music to the ears of the programs like Michigan that have been mainstays in his recruitment.  The Wolverines hosted Booker on yet again last weekend when he made it to Ann Arbor for their regular season finale against Indiana.

“It was crazy in there. I always enjoy going to Michigan. Last year, I was at the Ohio State game and it was crazy in there also.  So the atmosphere was kind of nothing new to me, but I think my dad really enjoyed it also.”

That dad was in attendance was the most important aspect of the trip.  Before the visit tour to North Carolina, Duke, Michigan State, and Michigan the only recruiting trip the former Missouri standout had taken with his son was to his alma mater.  That made it imperative for each program to capitalize on the opportunity.  The Wolverines had wowed Booker’s mother on past visits and  were clearly looking to have similar success with dad.  They did so even in defeat.

“You know what, Devin and I were talking… because every school we visited, they won… and that was the one place they didn’t win,” the elder Booker stated.  “Every game we went to I was like ‘Devin, I hope these guys win, because you have to meet with the coaches after the game.’ Even after the game, Beilein and his staff, they all had a positive attitude. I’m sure they wanted to win, but they also knew they had recruits in town they had to take care of as well.  They might have lost on the court, but you still have to try to win off the court as well.  They did a pretty good job of that.”

“The facilities are really really nice at Michigan. The coaching staff is really energetic, and you can tell they’re trying to keep the Michigan brand up as one of the top programs in the nation, and like I said, it was a big game, atmosphere was really good, and I enjoyed the entire process.”

Among the moments that added to his son’s excitement was the chance to fellow west side Michigan native, Drake Harris.

“Me and Drake text back and forth," the five-star guard said. It’s kind of rare when two kids come from the same city and get this highly recruited, so we just talk about things like that. Me and Drake are actually becoming kind of tight throughout the process.”

Speaking of process, Booker’s isn’t close to concluding.  Now that his recent visit flurry over, things are going to quiet down a bit.

“That’s it (for visits) until probably after summer’s out,” Devin said.  “We don’t have a set timetable, but it was important to us to hit all these visits back to back to back so we can compare them up and then decide then. Probably my next go around of trips will be officials actually.”

“We’re just reading the process,” Mr. Booker added. “(Devin) and some of the other players are being recruited by the same schools, so the important thing for Devin is somewhere where he can go play right away.  You have to look at all that, style of play and how comfortable he is with that. I assume (the decision) is going to be in the early period, so after the summer we’ll start making the official visits to the places and go from there. We’re not going to rush the process because we want to make the right decision. The kid has a lot of great schools after him, so you have to take your time to make the right decision.”

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