Recruiting: Pope impressed with Oklahoma

Alquippa, Pa. five-star forward Herb Pope talks about his visit to Norman and when he could make a decision. Pope is ranked as the 17-best prospect in the nation by

Herb Pope, F, 6-8, 220, ALIQUIPPA, PA:

JH: What did you think about your visit to OU?

HP: "It went great. I loved the facilities, coaches and players at OU."

JH: Have you always been interested in OU?

HP: "I knew the coaches when they were at VCU. Now that they are at OU I have an interest in OU."

JH: What did you like and dislike about Oklahoma?

HP: "There wasn't anything that didn't impress me. I was impressed with the whole facility, the coaching staff and the IQ of every coach that is there. All of them have high credentials, so I think it is a very good program that is going to be on the rise."

JH: Who did you hang around with at OU?

HP: "I hung around with Bobby Maze and Michael Neal. Actually, I hung out with pretty much the whole team and all the coaches."

JH: What did you learn about Oklahoma that maybe you didn't know before?

HP: "I learned that they have a great tradition. I didn't know that they had the longest postseason participation streak in college basketball. I didn't know they had such great winning percentages at home and overall. They have a pretty good tradition at home."

JH: What was your take on Jeff Capel?

HP: "He is a genuine guy and a down-to-earth type person. He is just a good guy."

JH: Now that you have been to OU, would you say the Sooners have a better chance to sign your or that they have enhanced their chances to sign you?

HP: "It is the same as before the visit because they had a good chance before I visited them. I just got to see the whole facilities and now I have a better feel for the coaches."

JH: Who is all involved with your recruiting process at this point?

HP: "I have checked out Memphis, Maryland, New Mexico State and OU. USC called, but they are just now getting into it along with Arizona. It is just a couple of phone calls with those two schools, but who knows. The schools where I have visited already are the schools that I am checking out the most. I am going to Texas this weekend."

JH: Do you have a favorite at this time?

HP: "I don't have any favorites. Everybody is equal right now."

JH: What are going to be the key factors in your decision?

HP: "I want to go into a school where I am going to play. I want to basically almost start, but I don't want the position given to me. I guarantee that I am going to come in and work for that. Then it is feeling comfortable with the coaching staff. It will be who I felt most comfortable talking to, where I felt most at home and where I can see myself playing."

JH: Can you say where you have felt the most comfortable at this point?

HP: "I am going to wait before I actually tell anybody. I am going to have a press conference once I find out where I am going to sign and everything. I am going to let people know."

JH: Are you going to sign during the early signing period?

HP: "Yeah, I am."

JH: So after your visit to Texas this weekend you are going to sit down and make a decision?

HP: "Yeah."

JH: Does distance matter to you at all?

HP: "No, distance doesn't matter to me?

JH: What did you average last season?

HP: "I averaged 18 points during the regular season, 12 rebounds and nine assists. Then in the playoffs, I averaged 24, 12, eight and six blocks."

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