Matthews Plans To Visit NC State

HOUSTON -- Versatile wing Christian Matthews is very on on N.C. State this spring and the Team Takeover 6-foot-6 Class of 2016 wing caught up with Pack Pride at the EYBL's third session in Houston.

Versatile wing Christian Matthews is very on on N.C. State this spring and the Team Takeover 6-foot-6 Class of 2016 wing caught up with Pack Pride at the EYBL's third session in Houston.

Playing for Team Takeover has been a learning experience for Matthews, as he understands how to play with one of the best and deepest grassroots teams in the country.

"I think I've played really well. Adjusting to the 17U EYBL circuit and I've adjusted pretty well," Matthews said. "It's a challenge because everyone thinks we're the best team around. Everyone is fighting for minutes. But at the same time, we're buying in. We don't slack. If I'm not starting, if VJ [King] is not starting, we come off the bench and give the same spark."

The three-star Matthews has started to come off of the bench to provide energy. Instead of worrying about starting, Matthews has been a valuable contributor off the bench for Takeover.

"I'm turning into an energy guy coming off of the bench. I'm so used to having the ball in my hands all the time scoring but I'll sacrifice for the team," Matthews said. "And when I come off the bench, I do what I do. Scoring, rebounding, defense."

Matthews told Pack Pride that Cincinnati, Georgia Tech, N.C. State, Rhode Island and VCU have offered him scholarships and he's been talking to Wolfpack coaches lately.

"The dialogue has been really good. I'm going down there to visit sometime this month," Matthews said of N.C. State. "They offered during the high school season towards the end."

Because of the program's recent success and head coach Mark Gottfried's ability to let wings have freedom, Matthews is very intrigued by the Wolfpack.

"I think it's a good program. They made it to the [NCAA tournament] and I think they can go farther if they buy into what the coaches are saying," Matthews said. "But I think their program is good, especially for wings. They let their wings kind of play their game. I think I'd fit into that system really well."

On the potential upcoming visit to N.C. State, Matthews is hoping to get more knowledge of the overall program and the current state of things.

"Just more history about [the school] and their system. Like how do they play?," Matthews said. "I think that they play off their wings, but it's probably more than just playing off of their wings. Probably playing defense first and moving the basketball more."

The recent Team Takeover connection to N.C. State is also a bit of a factor in that the Wolfpack already has former Takeover big men Lennard Freeman and BeeJay Anya. Anya and Matthews grew up in the same area and Matthews remembers watching him play in high school. Anya is the only player from the team who communicates with Matthews.

"Only one and that was my freshman year when he was a senior, BeeJay Anya. He was a dominant big man in our area at DeMatha," Matthews said. "I just kind of keep in contact with him and talk about the system."

Matthews is averaging 10.2 points, 3.5 rebounds, 1.2 assists and 1 steal per game in 17.6 minutes per contest. Team Takeover is currently 9-3 in the EYBL and tied for first in Division D. They stand in very good position to make the Peach Jam in July.


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