HSH 1-on-1: Quinn Cook is high on UNC, Duke, UCLA
Words. Jason Jordan
When listing the top point guards in the 2011 class, it’s hard not to mention Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.) star Quinn Cook near the top.
All Cook has done is remain consistent throughout the summer while running DC Assault, win gold with USA Basketball’s under-17 team, and cap off the AAU season with an MVP performance at adidas Nations.
“It’s been fun,” said Cook. “There were things that I felt I could’ve done better, but all in all I was OK with how I did this summer.”
We caught up with Cook, who was in Los Angeles for the Elite 24, to talk about everything from his recruitment to how Michael Jordan affected his rooting interests coming up.
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HighSchoolHoop: Let’s start with this, because there have been conflicting reports regarding the schools you’re listing. What’s your official list?
Quinn Cook: It’s definitely at seven. I’ve got Duke, North Carolina, Georgetown, Rutgers, St. Johns, Arizona and UCLA.
HSH: Do you have a timetable for when you want to get this thing over with?
QC: Hopefully, I’ll get it done in the fall, but if not I’ll do it in the spring.
HSH: Obviously, you only get to take five officials. What schools are absolutely getting a visit from you?
QC: There’s three right now: Duke, UCLA and Arizona, as of now.
HSH: So the other schools are playing for two spots?
QC: Basically, yes. I’ll know my five schools very soon.
HSH: Maybe at the Elite 24?
QC: That’s a strong possibility. I want to sit down with my mom and coach and go from there, but yeah I could announce at the Elite 24.
HSH: Rumor has it you grew up a big UNC fan?
QC: That’s actually true. They won a lot.
HSH: Indeed. I’m a fan of dominance myself.
QC: Exactly. The biggest thing with UNC though was Jordan! Everything for me was about Jordan and Kobe, but mostly Jordan because Kobe wasn’t established yet. Everything I did was Jordan-related. If you ask my mom and my sister, I was always wearing his clothes and shoes. So immediately (North Carolina) became my school. He went there and that’s where I wanted to go. So that’s where that all started.
HSH: Having the Tar Heels recruit you must be a big honor.
QC: Yeah. When they contacted me my sophomore year it was definitely an honor. I always told myself I was gonna be the caliber of player that a school like North Carolina would want. To see that come true was a big moment for me.
HSH: Would you call them your favorite?
QC: No, I wouldn’t say that. I can’t look at it from a fan standpoint; I have to look at it from a business standpoint. That’s just something I began to realize as I got more mature. When I was coming up I used to tell my cousin all the time that if North Carolina recruited me, I would go there, but now I look at it totally different.
HSH: Is it tough to make the separation mentally?
QC: It is, but then it isn’t. No matter who you liked coming up it’s always hard to say no to schools like North Carolina and Duke and UCLA and schools like that. You’ve just got to do all of your research and make the best decision for you based on that research.
HSH: That’s definitely a mature approach.
QC: Yeah. I had to get to this point though. Like I said, back in the day it was a different story. But honestly it’s tough on the other side of that too because you know (Duke guard) Nolan Smith is my god brother, right?
HSH: Of course I knew that. I do my research.
QC: (Laughs) Oh, OK. Yeah I’ve known him since I was four years old and I’m always with him when he’s home. When you see Nolan, you see me, and vice versa. He’s helped me a lot with this process and he helps me get my game to where he is or hopefully even better. He’s helped me a lot over the last few years.
HSH: Sounds like a tough decision is ahead of you.
QC: (Laughs) Ya know! It will be good though. Whatever I decide will be right for me.
HSH: Your class has its fair share of elite point guards. Where do you feel that you stack up?
QC: I’ve never been the type to say that I’m better than anyone. I do think that I do some things better than other point guards. I agree with you that we have some big time point guards in our class like Marquis Teague and Myck Kabongo. I definitely think that I belong in the same sentence as those guys.
Got a burning question for Jason? Email him: JasonJ@DimeMag.com