DEERFIELD, Ill. – Prior to this past weekend, Austin Nichols had only played in one major AAU event…
Nichols has huge offer list
Four-star center Austin Nichols was a heavily watched target during the month of April for college coaches. With his size and skill level Nichols became one of the most heavily recruited players in all of the 2013 class, and now he is taking a look at all of his options. At 6-foot-9 and 210 pounds Nichols has the ability to score inside and from the mid-range, runs the floor well, and is a decent rebounder. According to Nichols his game has grown significantly in the last year. "I think I have definitely improved mentally and physically," said Nichols. "I have hit the weight room and I think I can hit the perimeter shot. My ball handling needs to get a little bit better, but I think I have improved." Recruiting wise his list of offers is one of the most impressive in the nation. "My phone has been crazy," said Nichols. "Coach (Mike) Krzyzewski from Duke offered, North Carolina, Kansas, Ohio State, Memphis, Tennessee, Virginia, and Florida. Those are just some of the schools that have offered." The Duke offer is one Nichols wanted, and he said he and Coach Krzyzewski are developing a good relationship. "The way they play fits me," said Nichols. "Coach K, I think he likes me fairly well, so the conversations have been good and I know they want me." Just down the road in Chapel Hill, Roy Williams and North Carolina are also making it clear to Nichols that he is a top priority. "It is definitely something I am interested in," said Nichols of the UNC offer. "I haven't been on their campus yet, but they want me to visit and see some games, and hopefully I will be able to. Talking to Coach Williams he is a great guy and I love talking to him." One of the most recent offers from Nichols came from Ohio State. Thad Matta and his staff have decided Nichols is the type of player they want in the 2013 class. "I talked to Coach Matta the other day, and the first time I talked to them is when they offered me," said Nichols of the Buckeyes. "I was in Columbus a few years ago for a wedding and I got to see the football stadium and everything. It is a real nice campus and I would love to go up there, but I don't know a lot about them right now." While Ohio State is a recent offer, one of his first came from the hometown Memphis Tigers and their head coach Josh Pastner. "Coach Pastner is a great guy," said Nichols. "He has wanted me ever since my freshman year. He is loyal and knows what I can and can't do. He put his trust in me and has recruited me very hard." Nichols has no visits currently set up, and indicated that no timeline has been set for a decision it could be soon or it could be after he makes his official visits.
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