Monday, July 7, 2014

Will Jackson decommits, but UConn appears to strong with Derrick Jones

As UConn bids adieu to one Class of 2015 recruit, it appears to be in pretty good standing with another.

Will Jackson, who committed to UConn back in February, has decommitted and instead lent his commitment to Georgia, according to multiple reports:

Along with Prince Ali's recent decision to re-open his commitment, that leaves talented Boston guard Jalen Adams as the Huskies' only Class of 2015 commit at this point.

But it looks like UConn is in good with Philadelphia's Derrick Jones, the No. 33-ranked player in his class, according to Jones, a 6-foot-6 small forward who plays at Archbishop Carroll in Philly, visited UConn last Monday with his AAU coach -- who just happens to be New Haven native and former Hillhouse standout Terrell Myers.

"I think Coach (Kevin) Ollie did a great job while we were there," said Myers, who knows Ollie from his college playing days at St. Joseph's, as well as from playing against him in pro-am leagues. "They crossed the t's, dotted the i's, explained what UConn basketball is all about. He really, really enjoyed his visit. It's a place he can really, really thrive."

Myers added that Jones is "a great kid, an amazing kid, probably the most athletic player we have right now. He has the ability to do so many things."

"He's extremely athletic, and really knows how to play the game of basketball, as well. He understands the nuances of it, all the small details. That's the greatest thing about him. His upside can be tremendous, he's just still scratching the surface. He's so athletic, people don’t understand other things he can do because he wows you with his athleticism."

Jones does need to get stronger, but, as Myers noted, so does Daniel Hamilton. And so did DeAndre Daniels and Jeremy Lamb and any number of recent talented UConn recruits.

Jones went to the Syracuse Elite camp last summer and has visited a few schools locally, but doesn't have anything else lined up at the moment.

"He's 17, so making a decision for college is tough," Myers noted. "He's trying to figure out what to wear tomorrow."

His visit to UConn came largely as a result of Myers coming back to the area.

"I was coming up that way," Myers said, "and I thought it would be a good opportunity for him to see the school."

Myers used to run a basketball camp each summer at which Ollie would come to speak.

"Without calling him, he just showed up and spoke to the kids," Myers recalled. "He's always been a thorough guy."

Jones isn't the only player on the Philly-based We-R1 AAU team that UConn is interested in. There's also Sedee Keita, a 6-9, Class of 2016 center from Delaware who plays at Vermont Academy. And the Huskies have also inquired about Malik Ellison, a 6-5, Class of '15 swingman who is the son of former Louisville star "Never Nervous" Pervis Ellison.

"UConn’s a great place with a great basketball history," Myers said. "I think Coach Ollie is a guy who’s gonna take it to another level."

Some might say he already has.

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