Malik Newman plans to cut his list to “no more than six” schools by September and likely won’t announce his college choice until after Diamond Stone does.
“Yeah, probably by the beginning of school, probably in like September,” the 6-foot-4 guard from Jackson (MS) Callaway told SNY.tv by phone from the USA U17 trials in Colorado Springs, CO. “No more than six.”
Diamond Stone, the 6-10 big man from Milwaukee Dominican who has been linked to Newman in a potential package deal, has set his announcement date for Nov. 12, the first day of the NCAA early signing period.
Newman has not yet picked a date for his announcement, and it appears that Stone may announce first and Newman will go from there.
“It depends on where he announces on the 12th,” Newman said. “Whatever decision I make will be the best decision for me.”
In the past, Newman has said it was “100 percent’ that the pair would wind up at the same school, while Stone has put the odds at closer to 50 percent.
Newman is also rooming with Oakland forward Ivan Rabb, who told SNY.tv he, Newman and Stone have talked about playing together, while admitting it would be tough for all three to act in concert on a decision.
“Yeah, he’s my roommate so we’ve been talking about it recently,” Newman said.
Newman and his fellow U17s played in front of a Who’s Who of college coaches on Friday, including Kentucky’s John Calipari, Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski, Florida’s Billy Donovan, Kansas‘ Bill Self, UConn’s Kevin Ollie, Michigan’s John Beilein, Ohio State’s Thad Matta, Michigan State’s Tom Izzo, N.C. State’s Mark Gottfried, Indiana’s Tom Crean, Wisconsin’s Bo Ryan and Villanova’s Jay Wright.
Newman has listed Kentucky, Kansas, UConn, N.C. State and Mississippi State as the schools recruiting him the hardest.
Mississippi State remains an option because it’s the home school.
“They’re close to home and they’re doing a really good job of developing their players,” Newman said.
Kentucky has long been linked to Newman.
Asked what their pitch has been, he said, “Same old recruitment stuff.”
Asked about the number of NBA players Kentucky has produced, Newman said, “I don’t really look into that.”
N.C. State, UConn and Kansas are all in the mix as well.
For now, Newman says his hand is feeling fine after an injury kept him out of the Peach Jam, although he is playing with a bandage on his hand.
“Yessir, my hand’s not really me bothering me so I’m fine,” he said.
The team will cut from 33 to 16 Saturday morning and then to 12 by Monday or Tuesday, and Newman hopes to make the final roster for the FIBA Americas World Championship next month in Dubai.
“It would mean a lot,” he said. “It would be a blessing and an honor at the same time.”