Kingwood: Drew Gordon Spotlight

HOUSTON --- Drew Gordon had hoped to get off to a better start at the Kingwood Classic.

Running with his club team, the Oakland Soldiers, the 6-9 post player struggled at times and had to go to the bench early after a technical foul disqualified him in the Soldiers' 66-64 loss at the hands of Georgia Elite.

The game was actually the bouncy big man's first in a while after being sidelined by some health issues.

"I'm coming off a stomach flu and food poisoning and it was my first actual game for AAU," said Gordon postgame Friday night. "So, I'm still trying to adjust to the reffing and just the style of play. Having a game under our belts I think we'll be able to bounce back and show the people what the Soldiers are really about."

Scoring only six points from the field, and limited greatly due to foul trouble, Gordon was a force defensively. He's a ridiculously quick leaper, with good timing and the ability to seemingly hang in the air to reject and alter shots. Not surprisingly, he thinks there are some things he can do better next time out, but at the same time he's not going to change his style.

"I just need to get healthy and to apologize to my coach for the technical foul. I don't think I deserved it and don't know quite why I got it," Gordon told Inside Carolina. "I play for the love of basketball and I play off emotion, so if I get a technical foul, I get a technical foul that's just part of the game."

On Saturday, the 16-year-old knows that he'll be playing in front of a crowd of coaches likely to include some high profile coaches.

"I hope it doesn't affect my mindset. I'm just playing to play," said Gordon of the coaching presence. "If anybody likes my game then they like my game. If anybody wants to criticize my game, then they can go ahead and feel free do that."

That being said, Gordon is extremely appreciative of the attention he's garnering and hopes that he's worthy of it. But, once he's on the floor it's all business.

"I thank them, I welcome them with open arms and I hope they enjoy what they see," said Gordon. "I'm playing a game. We can talk after the game or before the game and have buddy-buddy time. But, when the game starts, it's game time."

While many are interested to know what Gordon is thinking about college, he's keeping things very quiet at this point. He's going to be cutting his list soon, and he's not giving out much in the way of hints and declined to name schools that are the most involved in his recruitment

"At this point I'm not allowed to release that," said Gordon of his list. "I'm sending out letters to all of the schools that I'm not interested in anymore and I'm keeping a top four. That should be going out in about two weeks or so and at that time I'll be able to reveal more."

When asked to talk about North Carolina and whether or not the Tar Heels would be a factor, he did expand a little.

"Nobody's out of the mix yet, we have to sit down next week before we go to Vegas and decide who the top focus schools are going to be," said Gordon. "Carolina is definitely in the mix, I like Carolina."

As for whether or not Roy Williams has extended him a scholarship offer, Gordon doesn't know.

"At this point I don't know," said Gordon when asked if North Carolina had offered a scholarship. "My high school coach deals with all of the scholarships because he doesn't want me slacking off due to offers or what not."

With so much still up in the air about his recruitment, it's just a matter of Gordon deciding which move is the best one to make. From the sounds of it, his comfort level with those involved at each program will be very important.

"Cutting the list down, it will be what my family feels comfortable with and what I feel comfortable with," said Gordon. "How do the schools fit me and my personality? I'm a fun, carefree guy so it's not going to be a real strict, tough school. Basketball, coaches, you know how well the coaches gel and mesh with me. Just how well everybody gets along together on the basketball court because that's going to be my family for the next four years."

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