Payne Excited About First Trip to Ann Arbor

The Duke game is causing quite a stir around the Ann Arbor area, evidenced by it being the first sell out at Crisler Arena this year. The buzz has started to catch on with recruits too. Some of the state and midwest's best prospects will be in attendance to catch the much improved Wolverines. One of them will be 6-6 195-lb Cincinnati, OH (c/o 2010) product, Allen Payne.

Allen Payne Profile

"Yea, me and my dad are waiting on Coach Jackson to make everything final," said Payne of his visit plans. "We'll probably be getting up there Saturday afternoon because I know we have practice Saturday morning. I'm excited. I've never been up to Michigan and I know they play Duke, so it should be a real good game."

With trips already to Ohio State, Dayton, Cincinnati, West Virginia, Kentucky and Indiana (with offers from IU and Dayton), Payne knows what to expect when it comes to college campuses. It's just a matter of finding that right fit.

"I'm looking for an atmosphere where the fans treat the players right and where they're into the program," Payne explained. "The lifestyle on and off campus, maybe how close the gym is to where you live. Where the classes are to your dorm. Stuff like that. Also, where the school is (in relation) to Cincinnati, where I live. Having a good relationship with the coaches is important too."

Style of play is also a factor Payne will look at. He describes himself as a slashing small forward with a very high basketball IQ. He indicated that he could see himself in the wide open offense that Beilein likes to run.

"They got that run and gun offense," Payne said of Michigan. "I know they like to run. It's fun to play in. It's like the (Phoenix) Suns or (New Orleans) Hornets or something. Their telling me they need a wing in 2010... somebody that can step in and help them right away. They say they need a good defender and slasher that can get to the rim and that I fit that style of play."

Focusing on his season at Cincinnati Winton Woods high, the Ohio southpaw has big hopes for a state championship. This is Payne's third year on the varsity team and he certainly wants to take more of a leadership role this time around.

"I think this is our best team that we've had... the most talented team," he said. "As far as chemistry and everyone playing for each other, this is the best team I have been on since being in high school. I think we got a real good chance because Ohio has real good high school basketball. We beat most of the good schools this summer. If we can get out of southwest Ohio, then I think we'll be okay."

"My coach expects me to be a leader this year," he continued. "I have the most experience on the team. He expects me to lead by example and to be more vocal this then the past two years."

While Allen projects as a small forward at the college level, he claims he can play and has knowledge of every position on the floor. Furthermore, his lefty status throws defenders off at times. That enhances an arsenal that features the ability to take it straight to the hole, or take advantage of his "nice pull up".

Look for more on Payne in the days following his visit.


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