SMU will bring in an influx of guards in its 2015 signing class, but with Nic Moore’s senior year on the horizon, the Mustangs have to keep looking for a possible replacement. One candidate could be 2016 University Lab (La.) point guard Skylar Mays, whom SMU has monitored for a while and finally offered last week.
“I was excited. Excited is an understatement,” Mays said of the offer. “They’ve got a legendary coach in Larry Brown, a great coaching staff with coach (Tim) Jankovich and coach (K.T.) Turner. I’ve been in contact with coach Turner more than any other coach there.”
Both Jankovich and Turner have watched Mays play, and Mays has formed a great relationship with Turner by talking with him regularly.
“He’s a very laid-back guy,” Mays said. “When you’re talking to him, it doesn’t feel like you’re really talking to a coach, it feels like you’re talking to just another guy. Great guy, just a laid-back guy that you can talk to about anything.”
Given his relationship with Turner, it’s no surprise that the coaching staff is his favorite part about SMU.
“I feel comfortable talking to them,” Mays said. “You feel like you’re talking to a person who respects you, and that really means a lot.”
Mays said he and the staff have discussed a visit in late May or June after he finishes school.
“I definitely want to visit the school at some point,” Mays said.
Mays said the SMU coaches told him they would watch him again during the spring AAU circuits, in which he will play on the Nike EYBL circuit for newly-minted Elfrid Payton Elite. Mays’ successful junior season ended with a state championship.
“It went well, we won my second state championship,” Mays said. “I hope to go for a three-peat next year, but I just had a great year in general.”
Mays has offers from LSU, Mississippi State, UNLV, Tulsa, Tulane, Wake Forest and Southeast Louisiana. He said Memphis and Oklahoma State have shown interest recently. He said all schools are equal right now and will take his time making a decision.
“I’ll probably wait until August or September to cut the list down,” Mays said. “Then I plan on taking all five official visits, but I’m not really sure where yet. I definitely have interest in every school that shows interest in me...Come summertime, schools will probably separate themselves.”
The 6-foot-4, 190-pound Mays describes himself as a true point guard with a pass-first mentality.
“I try and be a great leader,” Mays said. “I think my best asset is my passing ability, and my strength is getting to the rim. I like to finish above the rim, but I can be crafty around the rim. I’m good at getting guys open and getting shots for my teammates.”