Leslie Sticking to Plan

C.J. Leslie was one of the top prospects in attendance at the 2009 Tournament of Champions, as he was the go-to guy for the Carolina Cobras, a new AAU program based in North Carolina.

C.J. Leslie was one of the top prospects in attendance at the 2009 Tournament of Champions, as he was the go-to guy for the Carolina Cobras, a new AAU program based in North Carolina.

"I'm playing with them because my head coach knows the coach and thought it would be good for me to play with them," Leslie stated. "We came out real strong in the tournament... I'm happy with my play since joining the Cobras.

"What I need to do is keep working on bringing energy for my team because my team feeds off my energy. I need to make sure I bring the energy every single night and that's what I'm going to do."

At 6-foot-8 and 210 pounds, Leslie is regarded as one of the top players in the 2010 class. He teamed up with John Wall, Dezmine Wells, and Bishop Daniels to lead Raleigh (NC) Word of God to an appearance in the state title game after winning the title in 2008.

Rated a five-star prospect and the No. 12 player in the country by Scout.com, Leslie is an elite run-jump athlete and has really improved his perimeter game and ballhandling.

With continued development, Leslie could mature into a real threat at small forward down the road.

"I've been in the gym four days a week," he stated. "That's how it's going to stay."

In between games and workouts, Leslie is going through the recruiting process. He verbally committed to NC State in 2007 but has since opened back up his recruitment.

"I'm not going to say it was a mistake," Leslie said of committing early. "I think it was a learning experience. You learn from it... I went through it. Now I'm going to take my time.

"I didn't get to see what all the schools were like. I felt like I needed to at least go out and look at some different schools.. look at everything I can and that's what I'm going to do this time."

Leslie stated that Wolfpack head coach Sidney Lowe seemed "a bit shocked" but indicated that NC State will continue to recruit him.

"I guess he was a bit shocked," Leslie said of Lowe. "He didn't really want to say too much. He still says he wants to recruit me and that's still one of my schools I'm looking at."

The Wolfpack has remain in contact and Leslie stated he talks with them on a regular basis. Expect NC State to remain in the mix because of Lowe.

"I talked to State a couple of days ago," said Leslie. "The coaches get one call a month and coach [Lowe] called me a couple of days ago. They are still on me big.

"I like coach Lowe a lot. He's a great coach and a great person really. I got to know really what type of a person he is, and he's a great person."

As for a list, Leslie admits that it is "really long."

"I'm just being patient," he said. "It's a long list because I've not narrowed anything down. I want to make sure I take my time with this.

"I don't have a top five because I haven't narrowed it down. I have a lot of schools on me... a lot of [offers]. Everybody in the ACC except for Duke. I've got the Florida Gators, Kentucky, and Memphis. I could keep going on and on."

Leslie has indicated that he will visit North Carolina in the next few weeks, a trip he's looking forward to.

"I like Carolina a lot," he said. "I'm going for a visit, and I'm really looking to have a good time."

Expect him to take his time and make a thorough decision. Leslie could take some official visits this fall before signing on the dotted line. Does he have a timeframe in mind?

"The fall will probably be when [I decide]."


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