Allen Emerges on National Scene

Each year, a few relatively unknown prospects emerge as national recruits during the July evaluation periods. It's safe to say that, this year, Grayson Allen is in that group.

Prior to the first evaluation period of July, Allen had offers from South Florida, North Florida and Georgia Southern.

Now Allen, a 6-foot-4, 180-pound junior guard from Riverview (Fla.) Providence, has offers from Florida, Florida State, Purdue, Illinois and Georgia. In addition, he lists interest from Boston College, Duke, North Carolina, N.C. State, Notre Dame, Tennessee and Virginia Tech.

"After the first recruiting period, I had between 20 and 25 calls," said Allen. "Then after the second period, I had 15 or 20 more. I probably noticed (my recruitment had taken off) during the second period in Augusta. We were playing on the side courts and it was so small that you could see everything."

Still, Allen said a couple of coaches have stood out among the crowd.

"The first coach I was shocked that was watching me was in Myrtle Beach -- when I saw a North Carolina coach (Steve Robinson)," Allen said. "Then in Augusta I saw Billy Donovan and Bill Self at my games."

After watching him at the Big Shots event during the first evaluation period of the month, Robinson called him about a week later."

"He said that he was going to try and catch me play some more," said Allen. "He said they were interested in me and wanted to introduce himself and talk for the first time. He sounds like a nice guy and is easy to talk to. I definitely was interested in what he was saying."

In addition to being interested in Robinson's words, Allen said he's also interested in UNC's program.

"I definitely like the idea of having Coach Williams as a coach," said Allen. "He's well known and has got a lot of wins – it's a prestigious program. Another thing I like about their program, just watching them, I can kind of tell they play uptempo and at a fast pace, and that's something I like."

His ascension into the national consciousness, naturally, has been validation for Allen, a member of the class of 2014.

"I never expected any of this," Allen explained. "I'm just kind of enjoying it right now. (All this attention) excites me. It definitely feels likes all the hard work has paid off."

On the court, Allen considers himself a combo guard, able to score and setup teammates with equal ease.

"I think I'm best going in space off pick and rolls," he said. "I like using pull-up jumpers off pick and rolls, but if they go under the screen, I'm comfortable shooting the three."

Allen said he'd never heard of – and had to look up – the first player he was compared to.

"The first comparison that I heard was at Myrtle Beach and it was Bob Sura," Allen said of the Florida State standout from the early '90s who spent a dozen years in the NBA. "The tournament director at Big Shots told me one of the coaches had said that."

Allen is just getting started with the recruiting process, but plans to try and visit three schools in August.

"Right now, I don't have certain schools I like more than others because everything has just now started," Allen said. "In August, I want to visit some in-state schools like Florida, Florida State, USF and Miami."

Though he's not close to picking a school, Allen knows what factors will be important in his decision.

"Playing style and being comfortable with the coaches," he said. "Also, the school's campus and whether or not they have my major when I choose it."

*** Evaluation
by Brian Snow

"Allen was an absolute revelation at the Peach State Summer Showcase. He was virtually unknown two weeks earlier, and every game he played more and more high-major coaches were coming to his games, and all of them were coming away impressed. Allen is an excellent athlete with good size, can score off the bounce, finish through contact, and also makes shots from deep. Look for double-digit high-major offers to come his way by the end of the month. How he stayed under the radar for so long is simply baffling. It is nearly impossible to imagine a situation where he doesn't end up very highly ranked."

Grayson Allen Profile

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