Presently out with a broken wrist after a spectacular spill on a shot block attempt, Jerryd Bayless has a chance to return to the court by the beginning of the playoffs. The 6-foot-3, 180-pound point guard from St. Mary's High School in Pheonix, Ariz., is the No. 7 ranked player in the class of 2007 and has offers from every elite program in the country according to his AAU coach Earl Flaggs of the Arizona Magic.
"What school hasn't offed Jerryd?" said Coach Flaggs when asked about Bayless' scholarship situation. "There isn't a top school that has not offered him.
"Texas was here the game before Jerryd got hurt. Kansas has been in and Arizona is there all the time. We continue to get calls from the usual suspects like Wojo [Duke], [North] Carolina, Louisville and Michigan State."
Bayless' injury occurred while defending in transition when he went up to block a lay-up, struck his chin on the backboard and broke his wrist on his fall to the ground.
"Jerryd is restless and wanting to play," said Flaggs. "He gets the permanent cast off next week. Technically, he could probably be back by the playoffs, but it depends on how the rehab goes.
"It was an unbelievable play when he got hurt. He actually struck his chin on the backboard right above the padding and then again when he hit the ground. We were all worried about his chin. It need 25 stitches. Then we realized that he broke his wrist on the fall. He got hurt with 2:17 left in the first half and already had 14 points."
Obviously possessing wicked athleticism, Bayless is in contention with O.J. Mayo, Derrick Rose and Edwin Rios for the top point guard in the 2007 class.
"Jerryd has gotten so much stronger," said Flaggs. "Before he got hurt, he was consistently dunking over people, getting in the lane and jumping over people to score and getting wherever he wants with the ball."
Better consistency in his long range shot is the one area where Bayless could most improve his game and his ranking.