Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
Chicago Curie big man Cliff Alexander won’t cut his list from four schools to three before announcing at 4 p.m. EST Friday on ESPNU, his mom tells SNY.tv.
“What the people are saying is false,” Latillia Alexander said by text. “He is keeping all four schools in until Friday afternoon.”
Alexander is considering DePaul, Illinois, Kansas and Memphis.
He was expected back later Monday after visiting Kansas to see his girlfriend play with the Kansas women’s team this weekend.
Still, Mike Oliver, Alexander’s coach at Chicago Curie, said three of his four schools visited Alexander last week in Chicago — and Kansas was not one of them.
“Kansas was the only that didn’t come visit,” Oliver said. “Memphis came, Illinois came twice and DePaul came over there twice.”
Oliver said he thinks Kansas is focusing on Jahlil Okafor, the other Chicago big man who is expected to choose between Kansas and Duke and will attend the game between those two schools Tuesday in Chicago.
“I think [Kansas] is concentrating on Jahlil a little more now,” Oliver said.
Alexander has always spoken highly of Kansas and his relationship with assistant coach Jerrance Howard.
Oliver said they appeared to be the favorite for Alexander up until a couple of weeks ago.
“When last we talked about it he was leaning toward Kansas two or three weeks ago,” Oliver said. “He said he like the campus and he had a good visit down there. He felt comfortable.
“The last couple weeks I know Bill Self has been to Chicago a couple of times but he didn’t come to visit. He was there to visit Jahlil.”
Asked his thoughts on where Okafor and Tyus Jones might land, Oliver said: “I think it’s between Kansas and Duke. From what people in Chicago are saying Kansas is the frontrunner right now.”
Oliver said the recent talk around Chicago has focused on DePaul or Illinois for Alexander.
“I think he’ll play anywhere he goes but how much he will play depends on who else will go with him,” Oliver said.
“Illinois, DePaul, Memphis, he will play right away, 25-30 minutes. At Kansas depending on who’s going down there it might be a little battle for minutes.”
Alexander will announce at 3 p.m local time — 4 p.m. EST — at Curie.
“I know he’s supposed to make a decision on Friday,” Oliver said.
Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.