Derrick Favors, who is ranked as the nation’s No. 1 basketball prospect by several recruiting services, said there’s no reason for Georgia Tech fans to worry over the next 10 days. Favors has been committed to the Yellow Jackets since January, and will officially sign the scholarship papers on April 15.
“There’s always rumors going around, but I’m 100-percent committed to Georgia Tech,” Favors told the AJC on Sunday night. “When I made my commitment, that was it. There haven’t been any reasons to change things. Georgia Tech hasn’t had a coaching change, and I’m real cool with the team, so I’m staying with them.”
The rumor mill for college basketball recruiting is at its peak. John Calipari was named Kentucky’s coach, and high-profile prospects committed or signed elswhere may follow him. If you recall, Calipari’s former school, Memphis, was a finalist for Favors, along with UGA and N.C. State. Georgia named Mark Fox as its new coach on Friday.
Both Favors and his high school coach, Michael Reddick, said they have not had any recent contact with UGA or other schools. Basketball recruiting is just like football recruiting. With the elite prospects, coaches from competing schools may call right up until the moment the papers are signed. Favors has yet to write his name anywhere on official documents.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if anyone tried to check into Derrick’s situation, that’s just the way recruiting works,” South Atlanta’s Reddick said. “But so far, nothing. Derrick is pretty much set on Georgia Tech. He wanted to be close to home, and Georgia Tech has been a favorite team of his since he was in the seventh grade. I don’t see anything changing.”
“We’re just about at the end of our long [recruiting] journey. We’re ready to hand over the reigns to Georgia Tech, and hopefully they will be able to push him to another level.”
The 6-foot-9 Favors is one of the most celebrated high school players in state history, and was honored as Parade Magazine’s 2009 National Player of the Year on Sunday. Favors also won MVP honors at last week’s McDonald’s All-America game, which also featured star-studded prospects DeMarcus Cousins and Xavier Henry. Favors said none of his McDonald’s peers really talked to him about recruiting. “They are more worried about which school they are going to go.”
Favors averaged 27.5 points and 13.3 rebounds as a senior, while leading South Atlanta to the Class AAA state championship. “I’ve always known and seen what Derrick can do,” Reddick said. “It’s great to see him get all the postseason recognition. It’s just something else to make you proud about Derrick. Georgia Tech is getting a good one.”