A few words on Jalen Adams

I didn’t get a chance to post this the other day (must have been a soccer fever) but here are a few comments from Jalen Adams and his coach at Cushing Academy.

Adams, a 6-foot-2 guard from Roxbury, Mass., committed to play for UConn this week.

— ADAMS ON THE inevitable Shabazz Napier (his fellow Roxbury-to-Storrs traveler) comparisons he’s getting.

“I definitely embrace it,” Adams said by phone Monday night. “It’s a good thing.”

Adams wouldn’t mind having a college career similar to Napier’s.

“He won that championship (in 2011) as he was learning to be a leader and then he definitely lead them to that second championship as a senior,” Adams said.

Adams was considering Kansas and Louisville before choosing UConn.

“Mostly style of play,” Adams said when asked why he picked the Huskies, “and the pro guards they’ve produced in the last few years. I feel I fit that mold.”

— UCONN’S RECENT national championship didn’t really impact Adams’s decision.

“Not really. Coach (Kevin) Ollie said they don’t really chase championships. Championships chase them,” Adams said, repeating one of Ollie’s favorite new sayings.

— CUSHING COACH Barry Connors gushed a bit when talking about Adams.

“He’s like nobody I’ve ever seen,” Connors said.

Cushing then repeated a phrase he told the esteemed Dave Borges about Adams a few months ago.

“I’m not going to tell you he’s the best player I’ve ever seen but the game does come easier to him than to anyone I’ve ever seen,” Connors said. “He has the incredible ability to make a play whenever it’s needed.”

Connors coached, and Adams played alongside, Syracuse-bound Kaleb Joseph. Even Adams’ teammates were apparently in awe at times.

“He’s got teammates that are really accomplished basketball players and even they would look at me after he makes a play and say ‘Coach, what the (heck)?’ ” Connors said. “He’s got the wow factor.”

— CONNORS ISN’T SURE there are many players better in the Class of 2015.

“His national ranking is whatever it is. He’s in the 20’s or 30’s, I think,” Connors said. “I’m a little biased but if there are 26 better players out there, holy mackerel, I’d like to see those guys.”

As for Adams’ specific position, maybe that will be settled later. He’s not a true point guard, yet.

“He’s a scoring guard. He makes plays the best with the ball in his hands,” Connors said.

Neill

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About Neill

Neill Ostrout covers the UConn men's basketball team for the Journal Inquirer in Manchester. He has been a member of the "Horde" for more than 16 years.
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