McKenzie Impressive This Summer

Griffin McKenzie had a back injury that prevented him from really showing what he could do during his junior season at Moeller High School. Now, the versatile 6'8 power forward is hitting his stride at the right time and Division I coaches have taken notice. DeaconSports caught up with McKenzie to get his thoughts on his play this summer as well as were he stands in his recruitment.

It is fair to say Griffin McKenzie hasn't had the easiest road to get where he is at today. A back injury sidelined him for much of his junior season and he was still a bit rusty when he came back.

Now, McKenzie's patience and hard work is paying off big time. "I couldn't be happier with where things are right now," says McKenzie. "I was a bit rusty when I came back in mid January but I continued to work hard and now I think I am playing good at the right time. I was ready for the summer to get here so I could show the coaches what I could do. In April, a lot of coaches weren't watching me and I got a little anxious but I just kept working hard and had confidence in my abilities."

McKenzie has plenty of abilities to be confident in. He has show a very well rounded, inside-out game and works very hard on the boards.

"I think my versatility is biggest asset. Shooting the basketball and rebounding are things I do well. I bring everything I have to the table for the team."

On the recruiting front, the last two weeks have been a whirlwind for the talented rising senior. "The last two weeks have been crazy but very exciting for me. It's not anything like I thought it would be. It is a very exciting time for me. The phone is ringing constantly."

Just in the last two weeks, McKenzie has picked up a handful of Division I offers. "Xavier, Wake Forest, Northwestern, Providence, Tennessee, Western Kentucky, and Cincinnati have all offered within the last two weeks. Before then I had multiple mid-major offers."

Recently, Wake Forest head coach Dino Gaudio was able to watch McKenzie multiple times and the talented forward took note of that.

"I was very excited to see Coach Gaudio at my games. He was at every one of them last week. I am excited to hear even more from him."

McKenzie is becoming familiar with the Wake Forest program and likes what he has heard so far. "Coach Gaudio has told me about their program. He has told me about their academic prestige as well as their athletic success. Also, one of my high school coaches is good friends with Coach Gaudio."

McKenzie knows what he is looking for in a college and distance will not be a factor in his decision. "I am looking for a winning program. Also, academic prestige is very important. I also want to develop a relationship and feel comfortable with the head coach and players at the school. Distance will not be a factor for me. I am looking for the right school for me no matter where it is at."

Mckinzie stated he would like to visit Wake Forest this summer and hopes to have a college choice made before his senior season.

The college McKenzie choses will be getting a very versatile and tough big man as well as a quality individual that values education and will do whatever is needed for his team to succeed. He has shown a great work ethic and resilience in coming back from his injury and is now playing better than ever.

Note: Since this interview, Mckinzie has informed DeaconSports that Ohio State and Vanderbilt have now offered him recently as well

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