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James Wiseman releases his final five schools - He talks to Prep Circuit on his official visits and timetable for a decision

By Pat Lawless, 10/04/18, 1:00PM EDT


James Wiseman talks to Prep Circuit on his final five schools

Five-Star senior James Wiseman released his final five schools, which include Florida State, Kansas, Kentucky, Memphis, and Vanderbilt. The Memphis East (T.N.) standout has taken two official visits to Kentucky and Kansas thus far and is set to visit the remaining schools on his list this month. Wiseman has enjoyed the experience that comes with each visit thus far.

“On my visits, I’ve been looking at the environment of each school,” Wiseman said. “I enjoyed the Kentucky and Kansas visits and can’t wait for the rest of the visits. For example, I went to Late in the Phog and it was amazing. It was a really fun atmosphere, I had a great time and I just created a great relationship with Bill Self right away. The same goes for Coach Penny Hardaway, Vanderbilt, Kentucky, and Florida State. The process has been great and I’m just enjoying it a lot.”

Wiseman started his official visits off with the Kentucky Wildcats. On the visit, John Calipari went in depth with how he sees Wiseman fitting in with their program.

“It was great, I had a great time at Kentucky,” he said. “Coach John Calipari actually showed me film of Anthony Davis playing and then compared my EYBL highlights to their system. It was very identical and I could see myself playing with them a lot. They spoke a lot about getting the rebound and running so I can fit in well with their system. All of the schools on my list are similar in that I can fit in with how they play. I’m just looking to trust the process and keep getting information from each school and finding out which one is the best for me.”

His second official visit was to another blue blood program in Kansas. He went during Late Night at the Phog where the fans showed him a lot of love.

“It was a fun atmosphere and as soon as I walked in the gym everyone was screaming my name from the student section,” said Wiseman. “Cassius Stanley was on the visit with me and I thought we connected pretty well. We just had a great time and I thought the players were great to talk to. They spoke about everything including things that would be helpful behind the scenes. I interacted with the coaching staff and the players so I had a great time over there.”

He is set to visit Vanderbilt on October 14-16, Memphis on October 19-21 and Florida State on October 25-27. There are a couple of features to each school he looks forward to.

“I’m looking forward to seeing what each school is like and being able to interact with each program,” Wiseman said. “I like hearing from the coaching staff on each of their systems and also everything off the court. I want to hear about their academic curriculum and see if they are good off the court. I think those things will catch my attention.”

Two schools recruiting him come to mind when thinking of what recruiting pitches have stood out thus far.

“I’ve had a couple of pitches that have really stood out to me,” he said. “One that comes to mind is what Kentucky did with Karl-Anthony Towns and Anthony Davis. They did a lot of pick and pop, Anthony Davis was a rim protector, was able to rebound, block shots and was able to display his talents. He would have different options off things like the pick and pop, which Coach Calipari showed me a lot of. He compared our system in the Nike EYBL to Kentucky’s system because they are very identical.”

“Coach Leonard Hamilton from Florida State showed me film about his team during the in-home visit and I really see myself fitting in their system. They are a transition team that gets a lot of baskets in that way, which is what I love to do the most. Those were two pitches that stood out to me because of their film work, but I feel like all of the schools have done a great job showing me different things when recruiting me.”

Wiseman believes he has grown through the recruitment process and now sees this is a business decision.

“I’ve learned that this is a business decision and there won’t be hard feelings,” he told Prep Circuit. “I have to pick the school that is right for me and one where I am going to display my skills and show off my game. I want to represent myself in the greatest fashion and go to a school where I can connect with people, have fun and develop as a player and a person.”

While it appears he is taking his time with his decision, a timetable for his decision has been on his mind lately.

“I’ve been thinking about it and I think it will probably be around the end of this year or maybe the beginning of next year,” Wiseman said. “It’s a really hard decision so I have to be cautious, but I still make sure to trust the process. I pray every night that I go to the right school. I think it’s going to be soon and not too far down the road.”

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