Wendell Carter Jr. is ranked No. 2 overall in the ESPN 60 for 2017 and has the list of suitors to accompany that clout; Duke, North Carolina, Kansas, Kentucky, Harvard, Stanford, Arizona, Connecticut and many others are all in hot pursuit. In June, Carter averaged 13.6 points and 8.8 rebounds a game to lead USA Basketball to the gold medal at the FIBA Americas U16 Championship in Argentina. He helped the Georgia Stars win the prestigious Nike Peach Jam in July, averaging over 14 points and seven rebounds a game. Now, Carter has agreed to give USA TODAY HSS exclusive access into his world by chronicling everything from intimate details about his recruitment to his everyday life in a blog.
What’s happening world!
I’m kicking off my first blog with USA Today; just giving you a look into my world so here we go!
Well, right now our season is going pretty rough, we’re 2-8 and it’s definitely hard to lose so many, but I think we’re turning things around. We’ve been having some really good practices and I’m feeling pretty good about where I think we’re headed.
Last year we went all the way to the Elite 8 of states and this year we’ve got a lot of young guys on the team and it’s taking a little longer to get them used to the physicality of the game and how different it is from AAU ball.
This year is a lot different, I’ve had to grow a lot as a leader because the guys look to me for a lot. I try and lead by example, but I’m doing a lot more talking too.
I try and find different ways to communicate with them, just trying to see if I need to be calmer at times or if I can go ahead and let it rip when I need to.
This season is teaching me a lot about becoming a better leader.
The biggest thing I want to improve on in my game is my confidence in my shot. I know I’m a pretty good shooter, I just need to trust it more.
As far as my recruitment goes, I’m looking to narrow my list down to about eight. I’m not sure when I’ll get it done, but I think it’ll definitely be done before the end of the school year.
I know recruiting gets crazy for some guys with coaches calling and texting all the time, but I feel like I’ve managed it pretty well. I tell coaches when to call me and they follow that pretty closely. They definitely want to be on my good side so that helps!
I will definitely say it’s cool to be able to have access to these top coaches that you see on TV all the time. Talking to coaches like Bill Self and John Calipari and Coach K and the other coaches is just crazy. They’re all real down-to-earth though; but really funny too!
Coach Capel from Duke told me the other day that he was playing full court to 100 with the guys and he had 54! I was like whaaaaat! He must’ve been ballin’!
It’s cool having those types of conversations with the coaches.
I’m planning to visit Harvard and Kentucky soon, I’m just not sure exactly when yet. I’ll let you guys know when I know.
At first I was just enjoying the whole process, but lately I’ve definitely been thinking about what it will be like to only be able to tell one of these coaches “Yes.” That’s just crazy to think about it and it’s a lot of pressure. It’s crazy when you can’t go wrong with wherever you pick.
I’m sure you guys have read my boy Gary Trent’s blog here at USA Today about how he and I are planning to play together in college.
The Gary Trent Jr. Blog: Duke and Kentucky visits, Steph Curry, Thanksgiving and more
Well, that came about when we were at USA tryouts last June. We were roommates and we had great chemistry on the court. We both knew where we liked the ball and we’d always find each other on the court at the perfect times. It was crazy. So we kept in touch and kept talking about the schools that we liked and the schools that were recruiting us and decided that we wanted to do it.
I think it’s more likely that it’ll happen than not. You can never say 100 percent, but our parents have gotten close and they’re involved with it too so it’s looking good.
Most of the coaches recruiting us are aware of it too.
OK, we’re back in school now after the Christmas break and I’m staying on top of things pretty well. I’ve got a 3.8 GPA and I like math, but it’s starting to get tough because I’m taking honors Pre-Calculus. I’m gonna work it out though.
In my English class I had to write a paper recently making up a fictional story about anything. I ended up coming up with this weird story about a man who married a woman and everything was good until he found her cheating and it had some twists and turns in it, haha!
It turned out pretty good! I got an A on it too!
A lot of people ask me what I do for fun when I’m not hooping and, my big thing is, I like to stay a regular kid as much as possible so you’ll find me at Lenox Mall or Atlantic Station or just hanging out with my friends having fun.
OK world thanks again for reading my first blog; I’ll have many more to come. I’ve gotta get on out of here and get ready for school tomorrow.
Follow Wendell Carter Jr.