Marcus Williams Discusses His Top List

Marcus Williams talks about his interest in the Connecticut program as well as the other top schools on his list

LOS ANGELES -- Marcus Williams has narrowed his focus to six programs this summer, and it doesn't appear that list will do anything but shrink in the coming weeks.

Williams, the versatile 6-6, 195 pound swingman from Roosevelt H.S. in Seattle, Wash., has continued his strong play here this week at the Best of the Summer Tournament for the Seattle Rotary club.

Following a victory here this week, Williams told us that he has scholarship offers from Maryland, Michigan State, Texas, UConn and Florida. The final program on his list is Arizona, but Williams said he's not clear if the Wildcats have tendered him an offer yet.

"I would say that is where I've narrowed it down," Williams admitted. "It's been real hard -- I still tell the coaches to come and watch my games and that things could change, but I doubt it."

"I've thought really hard about it and talked to all of the coaches and try to deal with who I feel the most comfortable with and who I can see myself playing for," he continued. "In terms of game style, player development. Hopefully, after this tournament, I will be able to narrow it to three of four and take visits."

Williams cited the UConn, Maryland and Arizona are currently at the top of his six-team list, and he plans on taking visits (either official or unofficial) to all three in the coming weeks.

"I've heard some great things about Gary Williams, but it was even better when I talked to him, it was better than I could have imagined," Williams said. "He's a nice guy and a coach that I could see myself playing for."

"He seemed like a coach I could have a good relationship with off the court," Williams continued. "That was one of the big things, along with the conference, style of play and prestige."

Arizona is entrenched in a strong position as well with Williams.

"All of Arizona's guards are doing great things, and I see myself as playing either small forward or shooting guard," he explained. "I think there's some crazy stat that every guard that has started for them in the last 17 years has made the NBA."

"That's really appealing," Williams continued. "I talked to Lute and he seems like he's a real funny guy, and he has had great talks with my mom, my mom really likes him, and that's a pretty convincing factor that mom likes him."

Defending national champion UConn is also making a serious pitch for Williams' services. Husky Assistant Coach Tom Moore has been sighted at several of Williams' games here at the Best of the Summer.

"The national championship really had nothing to do with it, because I had talked to them before that," Williams said. "I talked to Tom Moore and Calhoun, and that seems like a coach that can really help me grow as a person and as a basketball player."

"People might say that he's an in-your-face coach, but I think that would be healthy for me," he continued. "I've talked with [Calhoun], and it seems like he would be real honest with you, and that's the kind of coach you need, one who will give you constructive criticism, that's pretty much what he's about and he knows how to push your buttons to make you become better and make you do things you never thought you could do."

Williams said he has also been impressed with the Huskies' great lineage of guards in recent years, and he added that he tries to model his game a bit after former UConn star and current Seattle Sonic Ray Allen.

As his final list might illustrate, distance will not play a role in where Williams winds up next fall.

"My mom and I have talked about it, and she thinks that getting away from home and starting my own life will be healthy for me," Williams said.

Should Williams opt to take only one or two more visits after looking at Arizona, Maryland and UConn, then he will need to make some tough decisions regarding Michigan State, Texas and Florida.

"They are all great schools, and as with my top three schools, I get along with the coaches and we talk on a regular basis," Williams explained. "They all play a similar style of play, compete in strong conferences and have coaches who have great reputations and have improved their players."

When it comes down to making the tough decisions, Williams will look at several key factors with each program on his list.

"The relationship with the coach will be big, but having a chance to play early as a freshman is real big for me," Williams explained. "I want to be able to get out and play, and I am going to work on my body and get bigger so that I can be an impact freshman."

On top of the strong relationship with the head coach, Williams will also closely examine the dynamics among the current players on each of his finalists.

"How I feel around the guys will be important," he said. "Is it a family environment with the players, or is there a lot of cliques?"


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