Jabari Parker picked Blue Devils even though Duke was his worst visithttp://blogs.fayobserver.com/accbasketball/December-2012/Jabari-Parker-picked-Blue-Devils-even-though-Duke-
Jabari Parker still had just about everyone guessing. Then, he pulled out that blue T-shirt with a white "D," and, finally, it became clear.
The prized prospect from Chicago's Simeon Career Academy, one of the most highly touted recruits in years, is headed to Duke to play for Mike Krzyzewski. Parker made the announcement in front of a national TV audience Thursday, in his high school gym, surely delighting Blue Devils fans.
A 6-foot-8 forward with the ability to nail jumpers from just about any spot when he's not throwing down vicious dunks, Parker can't sign his letter of intent until April 17. But he made his intentions clear with one highly anticipated oral commitment.
Michigan State, Florida, Stanford and Brigham Young also made his top five, and caps from each school lined a table next to the podium. But he said it really came down to three schools, with the Gators and Spartans right there with the Blue Devils.
Turning down the other programs, particularly Michigan State, wasn't easy, particularly after coach Tom Izzo's final pitch Wednesday. Simeon coach Robert Smith was so impressed he said, "If he was recruiting me yesterday, I would have committed."
Parker didn't. He saw a potential for controversy with him and the Spartans' Branden Dawson playing the same position. Instead, he's headed to Duke even though he said that was his "worst" on-campus visit.
"I didn't do what I wanted to do - that's be a kid," Parker said. "But I know being at college, it's all business. That's what they wanted to do, to show me. I know I didn't have a good time, but they just wanted to tell me, prepare for me and give me a little bit of a taste of how it's going to be in college."