Tony Parker had a special visitor waiting for him when he returned from his official visit to UCLA.
It was Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski.
Coach K made a personal appearance at Miller Grove High School on Monday for the second time in two weeks to visit with Parker, the 6-foot-9, 270-pound power forward who is ranked among the nation’s top 25 overall college prospects.
“Coach Krzyzewski just reaffirmed that he’d like have Tony in a Duke uniform,” Miller Grove coach Sharman White told the AJC. “Colleges are allowed to see a player three times in the NCAA contact period. [Krzyzewski] said he rarely uses all three of them but he did with Tony because he’s a top priority.”
It was just another day in recruiting for Parker, who has taken recruiting trips to Ohio State and UCLA within the last month, and will travel to Duke on Oct. 28. Parker has also made an unofficial visit to Georgia Tech.
“It was great to see Coach K; he has been recruiting me since the ninth grade,” Parker said. “He’s one of the most powerful names in college basketball, and I appreciate him visiting with me and my parents.”
Coach K stayed for nearly three hours. What did they talk about? “Not much basketball,” Parker said. “We just talk about life and things like that. We’ve developed a pretty good friendship.”
Parker took an official visit to UCLA over the weekend and paused when asked to rate it on a scale of 1-10. (Note: He gave Ohio State a “10”).
“It’s really hard to say,” Parker said. “Whenever you go on a visit, they really roll out the red carpet for you. You can’t help but love it. Every school is a 10 on your visit. UCLA was a lot of fun. It’s in LA, great weather, and a lot of history with that basketball program.”
UCLA also has another big factor in its favor – the Bruins hired Korey McCray, Parker’s longtime AAU coach with the Atlanta Celtics, as an assistant over the summer. Jordan Adams, who played with Parker on the Celtics, has already committed to UCLA.
“I’ve known Jordan for a long time, and it does affect my feelings about UCLA a little bit. It helps them. But ultimately I’ve got to make the decision that is best for me.”
What about the presence of McCray? “He’s a great guy. He was my AAU coach and I enjoyed playing under him. I think that was a great hire for UCLA and he will do great things there.”
Will one of those things be landing his commitment for the Bruins? “It’s great to have a Coach McCray there. He really is a good guy. I know there are rumors that I’m going to sign there only because he’s there but that’s not true. He would be one of the reasons to go there, if I pick UCLA … but right now, all the schools are even.”
Parker still has Memphis and Georgetown in his top five but has yet to set up an official visit to either school, while Kansas is making a late charge. Kansas coach Bill Self stopped by Miller Grove last week.
Parker said he was unsure if he would make an official visit to Kansas or anywhere else, other than Duke later this month. He is also undecided if he will sign in November’s early period.
BIG STORIES OF THE DAY
– By Michael Carvell, AJC Recruiting Blog
Note: Inappropriate BLOG comments and personal attacks will NOT be tolerated. We love the lively discussions but hate-filled, harassing and irresponsible comments are unacceptable.