Evans visits Oklahoma State, will decide next week
September 26, 2014
Mark your calendars for next Wednesday and Thursday. The Jawun Evans commitment watch has just been upgraded to a commitment warning.
The Evans recruitment is nearing an end, according to his mentor Lamont Simmons. Expect the stud point guard out of Dallas to announce his college decision Wednesday or Thursday. Evans is choosing between USC, Oklahoma State and Illinois.
According to Simmons, Evans won’t have a press conference like many top-rated recruits tend to do. Instead, an article will be released online informing the public, in coordination with ESPN.com’s Reggie Rankin.
“He’s not going to do a prima donna stunt, he’s not going to sit at a table and all that,” Simmons said. “He’s going to make a decision, we’re going to let (Rankin) know and he’s going to do a write-up on it and he’ll put it out. It’s probably going to be next Wednesday or Thursday.”
So there you have it. One week from now, we should know whether Illinois coach John Groce has landed his coveted point guard for the 2015 class, or if Evans is destined to play in Stillwater as an Oklahoma State Cowboy.
Groce had in-home visits with Evans and fellow Dallas target Elijah Thomas on Tuesday, hours after news broke that Jalen Coleman-Lands had committed to the Illini.
While it was reported that part of Groce’s sales pitch to Coleman-Lands included potentially developing him into a point guard at Illinois, Groce sold Evans on a scenario Tuesday night where he potentially would run the show at point with Coleman-Lands as a shooting guard. Predictably, Groce talked during the visit of how Coleman-Lands and Evans would complement each other on the court.
Evans is confident in his abilities. The commitment of Coleman-Lands and return of senior point guard Tracy Abrams for a fifth year in 2015 won’t negatively affect Evans’ decision, Simmons says.
At the moment, Evans is in the hands of the enemy, taking his final official visit to Oklahoma State. He’s visiting in the middle of the week in order to attend Thursday night’s Oklahoma State home football game.
Recently, Oklahoma State fans have grumbled about the failure of head coach Travis Ford to deliver enough wins with the talented rosters he’s had of late. Ford heads into 2014-15 on somewhat of a hot seat, raising the possibility that Evans’ future head coach could be fired before he ever plays a game, if Evans ends up committing to the Cowboys. However, Ford’s current job status is not a concern for Evans, according to Simmons.
Essentially, he said rumors are always swirling about head coaches, and that they’ve heard them all.
“So the kid is just going to see what’s best for him and make his own judgment,” Simmons said.
With that judgment set to come down soon enough, it should be a hectic week for Illinois basketball. Though 2015 big man Doral Moore was set to visit this weekend, it was announced Thursday that the visit has been put on hold, meaning Moore won’t make it to Champaign this weekend. That ensures that Illini fans will have their undivided attention on Thomas and Evans until their decisions are made.
We still don’t know when Thomas will decide, but Evans has ensured that next week will be significant.
Alex is a junior in AHS. He can be reached at [email protected] and on Twitter @aroux94.