Although Emmanuel Mudiay had been to a number of basketball games on the Hilltop this season, the five-star point guard from Prime Prep Academy, and future star of the Mustangs, had never checked out SMU's campus outside of Moody Coliseum.
On Wednesday before the Louisville game, Mudiay met up with assistant coach Ulric Maligi for his official visit and saw exactly what SMU has to offer.
"Campus is definitely crazy. I didn't know it was that big," Mudiay said. "It's a private school, so it's pretty big for a private school. It was a good experience to check it out."
Mudiay was most impressed with how friendly and family-orientated the school's athletic program is. After meeting athletic director Rick Hart and a few other administrators, Mudiay now realizes how many opportunities SMU will provide for him.
"I got to meet the AD and a lot of other people in the program. There are really good people around here that care about the program and want the athletic department to be successful," Mudiay said. "They are going to get me to where I want to be in life. I know I'm going to meet some great people around here for networking and stuff like that, so I'm definitely looking forward to it."
As for the game, Mudiay was impressed with how the Mustangs played in the first half against the Cardinals. When I caught up with him during halftime, he was confident that SMU was going to comeback and win the game.
"Man, this is such a crazy environment," he said. "Hopefully, we can pull it off. We are playing well, but Louisville just made a run at the end of the half. They are a great team, but I think Coach Brown will give us a good talk at halftime and we will come out better in the second half."
Although they ended up losing 84-71, Mudiay says SMU has impressed a lot of recruits around the country with their recent success. Even Myles Turner, the uncommitted five-star big man from Euless Trinity HS, told Mudiay he enjoyed his visit to the Hilltop a lot.
"I talked to him a little bit. He said he really like the new Moody Coliseum. I don't know what else he liked about it, but we're just going to let him do him," Mudiay said. "If he chooses to be a part of the family, than we will welcome him to the family. If not, I wish the best to him."
Mudiay hasn't really been recruiting anybody else because, according to him, most players in the class of 2014 already know where they are going. However, Mudiay says he will use the spring and summer to improve his game and prepare for the next level.
"I will definitely put on some weight and get stronger. I have a lot of work to do on my craft," Mudiay said. "I will continue to get better and get a lot of knowledge from Coach Larry Brown. I can't wait to get started."
At 6-foot-5 and 190 pounds, Mudiay is one of the most complete guards in the country. He says he is excited to play with all of his SMU teammates and believes Nic Moore will serve as a great compliment to his game.
"Nothing is promised to me, so I'm going to come out and do the best I can," Mudiay said. "I thank God for the opportunity he has given me, but I'll just keep praying and keep my faith up. Everything else will just take care of itself."