Hoops Recruiting: OSU Targets '09 Point Guard

Is there a reason that John Wall, one of the nation's top point guard prospects in the Class of 2009, would leave his home in North Carolina to play basketball for the Oklahoma State Cowboys? Yes, and GoPokes.com recently found out what that reason is and shares it in this story.

Wall, a 6-3 athletic point guard, burst onto the scene this summer. He was impressive in leading his D-One Sports team into the playoffs at the Reebok Summer Championships in Philadelphia, and then put on a show at the inaugural Reebok U. Camp in Las Vegas, where he averaged 18 points and was first in assists.

Wall has been steadily climbing up the Class of 2009 rankings, and is now rated the 12th-best overall prospect and second-best point guard, according to Scout national recruiting director Dave Telep. He's hearing from schools all over the nation, including Ohio State, Kentucky, North Carolina, North Carolina State, Memphis and Kansas, just to name a few.

But the junior at Word of God Christian Academy in Raleigh, N.C., is hearing criticism that he's not a good shooter. "One of the knocks on John is that he can't shoot the ball," says Brian Clifton, a family friend who runs the D-One Sports program in which Wall has played the past several summers. "It's not that he can't shoot, he just doesn't need to shoot the ball from outside that often because he is so good at taking the ball to the basket.

"People who see John play compare him to T.J. Ford or Mike Conley. He's a guy, just like those two, that has an extra gear. He has the uncanny ability to get to the basket at any time against anybody. His speed is just so tremendous. He's really, really athletic," Clifton continued.

Why would OSU have an advantage over schools like Kentucky, North Carolina and Memphis? Clifton was the legal guardian for current OSU freshman Marshall Moses, and Moses and Wall were AAU teammates.

"Oklahoma State has a huge advantage because of Marshall. He's all over John," said Clifton. "When John was younger and the older guys would be playing pick-up games, Marshall orchestrated it so that he could bring John up to play in the games, and he was always encouraging him. Next to John's mom, he's been one of John's biggest supporters. John has a tremendous amount of respect for Marshall. They have a really good relationship."

Clifton and Wall are expected to make an unofficial visit to Oklahoma State for the weekend of Homecoming and Hoops (Oct. 19-21) to visit Moses.

(NOTE: This excerpt on John Wall is from the story titled "OSU Targets Future Stars" in Go Pokes Magazine. To read the complete article, pick up the November issue of Go Pokes Magazine. If you wish to subscribe, call 1-888-501-5752, or click here Yes, I want to begin receiving Go Pokes Magazine

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