Alabama coach Anthony Grant was first in line with the opportunity to impress the AJC’s Mr. Basketball on his home court.
Westlake’s Marcus Thornton, one of college basketball’s hottest free agents, took an unofficial visit to Alabama this weekend.
Along with Grant, the prized prospect also had conversations with two other well-known Alabama representatives — school president Dr. Robert Whitt and Nick Saban, football coach of the reigning BCS champions.
“I was very impressed by Coach Grant and his overall approach to the program,” Thornton said in a statement. “He created a family-like environment, and seemed like a coach that anyone would want to play for.”
What’s up next for Thornton? He will visit Texas within the next week, and said he is likely to take recruiting trips to Kentucky, Georgia Tech, and UGA over the next few weeks. All the visits will be one-day trips to minimize missed classes for Thornton. He is an Honor Roll student with a 3.7 GPA, which includes AP classes for college credit.
What is the latest between Clemson and Thornton? He signed with the Tigers last November, but was released from his letter-of-intent after then-Clemson coach Oliver Purnell was hired away by DePaul. Purnell was a main reason why Thornton picked Clemson.
The 6-foot-7 forward still likes Clemson and is impressed with the new coach (Brad Brownell). Because Thornton has traveled to Clemson numerous times, he is “unsure if another trip is needed.” He has been keeping in contact with (Brownell).
The No. 7 and final school on Thornton’s list in Michigan. Thornton is still discussing Michigan with his family and “will decide something in the near future.”
Thornton said he enjoyed his Alabama trip, but declined to reveal a leader among his schools yet.