2006 Focus -- Earl Clark

Earl Clark was an unknown on the national circuit – until his performance in July. <P>

Earl Clark was an unknown on the national circuit – until his performance in July.

The long, 6-7, 210-pound junior point guard – that's right, point guard – displayed his versatility, court vision and ballhandling skills at the ABCD Camp – which in turn got him on numerous schools' recruiting boards.

Including N.C. State's.

"I thought I did well and showed coaches I can play at a high level," Clark said. "That was the most exposure I ever had."

Clark, who has drawn comparisons to Anfernee "Penny" Hardaway because of his size and ability to run the point, still needs to work on improving the consistency of his outside shot and his defense – but he appears to be a perfect match for Herb Sendek and the way he runs his offense.

Clark averaged 13 points, 7 boards and 5 assists per game last season at Rahway High (N.J.), despite missing the first half of the season due to being academically ineligible.

"I was just being lazy," Clark said. "Now I know how important it is and I've raised my GPA to a 2.5"

"Sitting out those games made me grow up a lot," he added. "It made me see which people I could trust because when you're down, some people aren't always there for you. You can see a big difference in people."

Clark said that N.C. State is among his top schools at this time, along with Kentucky, UConn and Georgia.

"I keep in touch with the coaches at N.C. State, and I like who they're talking about," Clark said. "I really like how their program is run."

The biggest factors for Clark will be choosing a program that he feels will develop him and also give him a chance to be the floor leader.

"I want to go somewhere that I'm going to have the ball in my hands," he added.

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