Four-Star Point Guard Has Pack Among Favorites

NC State's class of 2006 recruiting will take a hit today when super guard Edgar Sosa announces his intentions to play at Louisville. However, several options are still available for the Wolfpack, including a terrific point guard from Illinois.

Willie Walker, a four-star prospect according to, has been compared to Illinois star Deron Williams and several programs have already offered the Bolingbrook HS standout.

"Right now I've got offers from Ohio State, Miami, NC State, Marquette, Baylor, and Cal-Berkley," Walker told Pack Pride. "Illinois said they are going to offer soon too. Coach Weber just wants to see if I'm getting stronger."

Walker possesses all the traits you look for in a point guard, as he's patient, can get his teammates involved, play defense, and is a leader on the floor. He admits that playing the "one" on the next level is what he's aiming to do.

"I'm a point," Walker said. "Ohio State has mentioned me playing some scoring guard if I went there and they get Mike Conley, but other than that everybody's recruiting me to play point guard. I like to have the ball in my hands so I can make plays."

The Illinois native likes the in-state program, but says that the Atlantic Coast Conference is the best conference and where he would like to play.

"The ACC is my favorite conference," he said. "I like how they play transition and give their guards a lot of freedom. They let the guards score in the ACC, and the guards in that league are real good so you'll be playing great players every night. Illinois plays the same way as the ACC schools, and that's one of the reasons I like them."

As of now, he has a trio of programs at the top of his list.

"Well, I liked Georgia Tech, but they aren't really recruiting me as hard as the others," Walker said. "It's got to be Illinois, NC State, and Ohio State right now."

What does Walker like about the Wolfpack?

"I like that they are in the ACC," he said. "They are going to need a guard in that '06 class. They are looking for someone that can come in and play and that's really what I'm looking for too.

"Coach Phelps seems pretty cool to me," he added. "I got to take my SAT first before I can take some visits, and I'm doing that on the fourth. I'll definitely visit them though."

Looking for a deciding factor? Walker wants to play as soon as possible and that could be the major influence in his decision.

"I want to play early and that's a reason I'm looking at who I am," he said. "That's mainly why I'm not looking too hard at teams like Marquette and Baylor because they've already signed somebody."

In a few weeks he'll head down to the Bob Gibbons Tournament of Champions with his AAU team, the Illinois Wolves. For the Wolves to have a chance in the "TOC," they'll have to start playing better according to Walker.

"We've played alright, but we haven't played as good as we can," he said. "We're losing some games that we should be winning. I think as long as we start doing the little things we'll be alright."

Walker averaged 21 points, six rebounds, and five assists as a junior at Bolingbrook High School.

Scouting Report: It's not just the orange jersey that makes you think of Deron Williams, it's the steady poise to his game. Walker rarely forces shots and held up well under the pressure of the Michigan Hurricanes and their truckload of athletes. It wasn't until he simply ran out of gas in the second half that the Wolves were out of it. Mid-range, off the dribble, on the move, he's got a lot of tricks in his bag. There's no "wow factor" with Walker, much like the days of Williams when he was running the circuit with the Fort Worth Lions. --'s Dave Telep

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