Hall of Fame point guard and Chicago native Isaiah Thomas is one of the best people possible to give Jabari Parker advice on his recruitment. He was once a young heralded Chicago player and he went on to have what Parker has said he wants: a long NBA career.
Thomas was a keynote speaker at the Chicago Elite Classic and spoke with Parker before the dinner.
Thomas starred at Chicago’s St. Joseph High School before winning championships at at the collegiate and NBA level, with Indiana and the Detroit Pistons respectively. Thomas told Parker his college decision had to be about more than just basketball.
“Pick a school that you will be comfortable with the campus,” Thomas said by phone on Tuesday. “You’re going to be in the gym 2-3 hours a day. The other 21-22 hours you spend on campus. You got to make sure you enjoy the campus more than the gym.”
Thomas was apparently repaying the favor to Jabari, because his father Sonny Parker advised Thomas in his young days as a high school player.
“It’s the same (advice) his father would give to me,” Thomas said. “Whenever his father would come home from the summer when he was playing with Golden State, he never asked me about my jump shot; he never asked me about my crossover dribble and my between-the-legs dribble. He only asked me about grades, how I was doing in school and if I needed something to eat.”
Parker’s final list of schools are BYU, Duke, Florida, Michigan State and Stanford. He’s made official visits to all the schools except for Stanford, and The Chicago Sun-Times reported Wednesday that Parker will announce his decision on Dec. 20. Who does this make the frontrunners? I have to say Duke, Michigan State, and Florida probably have the best chances Parker has not even visited Stanford and he seemed a little overwhelmed by the attention he got at BYU. My gut tells me he ends up with Tom Izzo and becomes a Spartan.