Carter Gets Big-Time Offers

How many seniors in America are good enough to have three of the Top 5 teams in the nation offer them a scholarship last week? Well, the answer is one -- he's 7-foot-2 and his name is Jared Carter.

A lot has changed with Scott County (Ky.) High senior center Jared Carter since last summer. After a run on the circuit with the Derek Smith All-Stars, we valued him as a high level mid-major prospect. Boston College was the lone high-major to bite early and even got him onto campus for a visit, but they couldn't score the commitment in the fall.

Since that time, Carter's game has matured and he's developed into a Top 100 caliber prospect, but more importantly he's got size, skills and that ever important word: upside.

In the last 7 days, Illinois, North Carolina and Kentucky offered him a scholarship to their school. In case you haven't seen the polls lately, those are three of the five highest-rated college basketball teams in the country. Not bad for a young man whose team is now 23-3 and plays its first district playoff game this Wednesday.

Illinois got the ball rolling last week when they came in and offered the 7-foot-2 Carter. Next up, Kentucky made the pitch. Finally, North Carolina sent an assistant to see him on Friday and by Saturday evening the Tar Heels had joined the fray.

When the Wildcats chase an in-stater they can be pretty tough. They'll have an advantage with one of Carter's key family figures. The question is: will Carter leave his home state?

"It doesn't really matter to me," Carter said. "My mom wants me to stay in state and she thinks Kentucky is a great opportunity."

Now, UK has some competition here. Carter said his list now reads Illinois, Boston College, Georgia Tech, Kentucky and North Carolina. The Tar Heels offered him a scholarship and a pair of scenarios. They pitched a potential red shirt season and Carter understood the opportunity after speaking with Roy Williams – who watched him practice but not play – Saturday night.

"[Williams] said there might be a chance of red-shirting if some of the guys don't go to the NBA," Carter said. "I think it's a great opportunity. It really gives you another year to get used to college ball. It's just another year of college."

Carter has four official visits remaining. His plan is to get serious about the trips after his season ends and go from there. With the heavy hitters that recently entered the mix, he's got a tough decision.

"I just need a place with a great education and a great basketball program," he said.

His recruitment should be a well covered spring drama. One interesting angle to follow will be how loyal he remains to Boston College as the first big time program to offer.

"I liked the campus and the location and I thought it was pretty neat," Carter said. "That was the first school I visited officially. All the visits might be great so it'll be even harder to choose."

Inside Carolina Top Stories