If there were high school rankings for popularity, Zion Williamson would hold down the top spot in a landslide. His propensity for jaw-dropping plays and posterizing dunks has taken the country by storm. Williamson is the No. 2 overall player in the ESPN 100 for 2018 and has a resume that could hold up to any player in the country: Co-MVP of the NBPA Top 100 Camp, MVP of the Elite 24, Elite 24 slam dunk champ back-to-back state titles at Spartanburg Day School (Spartanburg, S.C.), MVP of adidas Nations Global; now he’s got everyone from Kentucky to Duke to North Carolina to Kansas to UCLA, among many others, all giving chase. Williamson 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.
My name is Zion and I’m back with blog No. 7 for USA Today Sports so let me catch y’all up!
I had two official visits recently to Kentucky and Duke and both were great.
First, I went to Kentucky.
I started my visit on a Friday and we had breakfast at the hotel with Coach (John) Cal then we went and met with the academic advisor so that was cool.
We toured the facility and I really liked getting the chance to watch the team practice. The thing that stuck out to me was that everything is built around going hard all the time. With so many freshmen out there, Coach Cal was showing them that they have to play hard every possession.
Later that night was Big Blue Madness and one of my favorite parts was the player introductions. They came out from behind the stage and had the big screens and they were doing their dances and everything!
It was fun.
Of course everyone knows that Drake was there and it was dope! That’s my guy!
I didn’t know he was coming, but he came in and gave a speech about how much love they’ve always shown him ever since day one.
Unfortunately, I couldn’t meet him due to NCAA rules! They told me before everything started that I wouldn’t be able to talk with him even though we had a pre-existing relationship.
Of course I hated that, but we keep in touch pretty regularly so it’s all good.
One thing I’ll say about Drake is that he never talks about me about going to any schools. I know people think that, but he has never done that. He just talks to me about how I’m dealing with life and things like that. He’s like a big bro and I really appreciate that about him.
The next day I went to a horserace and that was my first time going to an event like that. I could definitely see myself going to more of those when I get older. I had a good time there.
I watched two practices that day and after that Coach Cal and his assistants sat down with my family and I and talked to us about how I’d fit in there. Basically, he said I’d get to play my game there.
The one thing I always do is talk to the players that are experiencing what I could be experiencing if I choose to go to that school and I did that on the visit.
All of the guys I talked to said it really feels like home and talked about the things they love about Kentucky.
I would give the visit an 8 out of 10 overall.
This past weekend I went to Duke and had a great time at Countdown to Craziness.
The atmosphere at Duke is just unbelievable. When people say that you can feel the vibrations in the gym it’s not a lie.
You can actually feel it physically just because of the intensity of the fans! It’s just the perfect atmosphere.
The Cameron Crazies showed me a lot of love and, at one point, they started chanting that they wanted me to come sit with them and Coach K let me go over there and they went wild.
That was a lot of fun.
During the scrimmage I sat beside Coach K and he was showing me how he wouldn’t be putting shackles on me and he’d just let me play my game. He was pointing out different times in the game and saying when I get the rebound there’s no need to look for a guard just get up the floor and create in transition.
So I saw on Twitter that a lot of people were joking about how the players were dancing around to Duke’s song (Everytime We Touch) on Grayson Allen’s intro. Haha!
It was funny; people were saying stuff like “Zion is definitely going to Kentucky after Duke did this.”
Maaaaan, they were going pretty hard on them for that, but you just have to understand Duke and the tradition there with that song. That’s the thing there and I actually thought it was cool of him as a senior to want to come out to the Duke song for the fans.
I respected that he wanted to make it special for them.
That team is so talented it’s crazy!
I got a chance to talk to Coach K the next day at dinner with my family and the whole staff and we had a great talk.
He told me that I have one of the biggest brands of for a high school player that he’s seen in a while and that he could continue to help me enhance it and build it. He had so much advice to offer me and was talking to me about how he’d help me reach my goals to a level I never even thought about.
It was great; I would give the Duke visit an 8 out of 10 also.
I’m not gonna say 10 out of 10 on either visit because if that was the case then I’d be committed already. That’s just how I think.
I’m headed to North Carolina this weekend so I’m looking forward to that.
I don’t have any plans for any other visits right now.
I know Signing Day is next month, and, hey, if I’m ready I’ll definitely sign. But I don’t want to feel rushed by a date so I’m just seeing how everything goes.
My heart has to tell me which school I am supposed to be at.
It’s always funny when I read different things from sports writers that think they have me all figured out and know who I’m gonna choose. I don’t even know that yet! Haha!
I’m just gonna continue to enjoy the process and keep them guessing until it’s time to decide.
OK, I want to give a shout out to all the guys who were on The Path with me who have already committed to colleges. I’m happy for y’all and to the guys like me who haven’t made up their mind yet, I hope you find the school that’s perfect for you.
OK so let’s switch it up a little and let me tell you guys about school.
Right now I’m doing really good in the classroom and I’m loving History and English the best. I just love learning about the past and everything we’ve been through as people and as a country. Then with English we debate a lot about literature and things like that. I love hearing other people’s perceptions and ideas so that’s cool.
I’m excited about my senior season coming up!
I think we’ll be pretty good, but, for me, it’s all about enjoying this last year with my boys. I want to really enjoy everything about this season, hanging with my bros and I want them to get more D-I looks!
And you already know Drake is gonna pull-up at a game or two this season so that’s gonna be crazy.
OK, on the music side, y’all already know what it is with Drake and how often I listen him, but lately I’ve been going back and listening to more Jay Z.
I went back and listened to The Black Album and The Blueprint and just got reminded of how cold he is!
OK guys that concludes another blog for me; I want to thank everyone who took the time to read and I’ve gotta say again that y’all should go back and listen to Jay Z’s The Black Album because that man is too cold!
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