Just over a year from now elite 2014 center Jahlil Okafor will be one of the best incoming freshmen in college basketball, meaning that his already-hot recruitment will heat up even more in the coming months.
On Wednesday afternoon the Chicago native (Whitney Young HS) released a list of the final eight schools in contention for his services via Twitter.
The 6-11 center has been a bit banged up this spring, which has cut down on the number of games he’s played for the Mac Irvin Fire AAU program in Nike EYBL action.
But that lack of activity hasn’t diminished his skill level or the belief that Okafor will have a major impact on whichever school he chooses to attend. In a story done by Andrew Slater of Blue Devil Lair, famed scout Tom Konchalski was one of many who spoke glowingly of Okafor.
“He has a big, strong frame. He has a superior basketball IQ for a big man. Usually big, young guys don’t understand the game as well as he does. He’s very intelligent and a nice guy who can be, because of his size, he can be down the road, you know, I’m not saying he’s more skilled than Jabari Parker, but because he’s 6’10”, 260 or 270 or whatever he is, I think he can be an even greater influence on the game than Jabari Parker.”
Next month Okafor will take part in tryouts for USA Basketball’s Under-19 team, which will compete in the U-19 World Championships in Prague, Czech Republic. The World Championships tip off on June 27.
As a member of the U-17 team last summer Okafor helped lead the United States to gold in the U-17 World Championships with averages of 13.6 points and 7.3 rebounds per contest, earning tournament MVP honors.
Raphielle can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.