Koufos Reflects On Time At Maryland-Duke

Canton GlenOak junior Kosta Koufos is still on the shelf as he mends a broken foot. But the 7-1 standout had a chance this past weekend to attend a big ACC game between Maryland and Duke at Maryland's Comcast Center. He reflects on the game and provides an update on his foot and his college choices.

Make no mistake about it that Kosta Koufos would rather be playing. However, if there's a silver lining to the broken foot he sustained last month, it's that he has plenty of time to enjoy basketball outside of his own high school.

That was the case this past weekend as the 7-1 power forward from Canton GlenOak High School visited College Park, Md., to watch the Terrapins' home game against Duke.

"Maryland and Duke are so-called rivals, and it was crazy," Koufos said upon returning back from Maryland. "I mean the crowd was great, the whole game I have never heard so many bad words in my life. It was pretty exciting and we stuck around for the whole game. It was two of the top 10 coaches in the nation in Coach (Gary) Williams and Coach Krzyzewski. It was just amazing."

Currently, Koufos is still unable to begin rehab of the broken metatarsal that he suffered in a game in late January. The prognosis remains being out for 6 to 8 weeks.

He still is unable to do anything with the foot.

"Right now it's still off limits," Koufos said Sunday evening. "I'm going on Feb. 28 to get my cast off and we're going to see what we can do from there."

He said the doctor would take more x-rays to see if the bone has completely healed at that point, and if so, what sort of activity he could participate in as far as rehabilitating the foot.

At this point, a full recovery is expected by the middle of March, or thereabouts. Koufos didn't rule out a possible return to GlenOak for the remainder of the season if they are fortunate enough to be alive in the state playoffs by that time.

"There might be a slight possibility depending on how far they get," he noted. "Obviously, I would love to play in the tournament if I can."

Koufos did say that he would make a full return to the King James Shooting Stars for AAU competition when it begins in full sometime in early April.

Koufos played his team's first 11 games. He averaged 24 points, 11 rebounds and four blocked shots prior to the injury. GlenOak was 8-3 when he went down. Since Koufos was sidelined, GlenOak has gone 4-3 without him in the lineup.

It has been frustrating to watch his team play without him.

"I'm hanging in there," he said reluctantly.

Koufos has still been able to weight lift with his upper body and has still managed to do ball-handling and shooting drills in the gymnasium quite often.

It's also given him a chance to think a little more about college basketball and the recruitment from some programs – for instance, the trip to Maryland this past weekend.

Aside from the atmosphere, Koufos took excitement in watching some of the players involved in the game.

"Watching Nick Caner-Medley play and J.J. Redick – two of the best players in the ACC -- was great," he noted. "It was a treat."

Koufos especially noted Redick's play.

"J.J. Redick has the purest shot I've ever seen in my life," he explained. "During his freshman and sophomore seasons, he probably couldn't create his own shot, but now his junior and especially senior seasons he can create his own shot a little more and that's really helped him."

Koufos talked about Caner-Medley and how versatile a player he is.

That's part of what he sees in Maryland, and how he could fit in there.

"Coach Williams runs the flex offense, so Caner-Medley goes inside and outside within that offense," Koufos said, noting he would be used in a similar fashion with his size and skill.

He talked about the rest of his experience.

"We got to watch the game and after the game we got to talk to Coach Williams for about an hour," Koufos recalled, "so that's always a treat."

Visiting Maryland caused him to miss another one of his favorite schools on television.

Koufos was unable to watch the Ohio State-Illinois game on television since he didn't return back in time. But he did check on the result when he returned.

"I called (Ohio State commitment) Jon Diebler about it and he said (OSU) won by what, 17 points," he said, "which is an unbelievable win. That's Illinois, they're ranked in the top 10 in the nation so that's a plus for Ohio State."

Koufos mentioned attending the Ohio State-Michigan game next Saturday in Columbus, and maybe a trip to Michigan before the season is over, if time permits.

As far as the recruiting process, he said it is about the same with his favorites – Ohio State, Louisville and Maryland -- still atop his list and other schools like Illinois, Michigan and Michigan State are still involved.

As for a timeline, it still remains this summer most likely, give or take a couple of months.

"Nothing has really changed as far as that goes," Koufos concluded.

Koufos is anxiously ready for the day he can play a little basketball of his own – although he's having a good time watching it.

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