With a father who played and coached in the NBA and a brother who has led his team to the Final Four last year, Jai Lucas knows what it takes to be a big time basketball player. The 5-foot-10, 150-pound point guard from Bellaire (Texas) High School is soaking up knowledge at a rapid pace in hopes of following the legacy that his bloodline has started.
His father, John, and brother, John III, know a little something about the game. Dad is a 14-year veteran as a player in the NBA and he's had coaching stints with Cleveland, Philadelphia and San Antonio. John III is the starting point guard for Oklahoma State. Imagine the one on one games. But the youngest Lucas thinks his youth would prevail.
"Oh, I'll take both of them," the youngest Lucas joked. "Whoever wants to go first, I'll take them. Maybe the other one will get scared."
Lucas, the No. 19 ranked player in the class of 2007, has played with LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, Tracy McGrady, the entire Oklahoma State men's team and many others in his short life. He's watched some of the best players in the game up close and personal and has a mental encyclopedia bigger than most kids his age.
Along the way, Lucas has picked up a few pointers.
"Yeah, I guess I'm pretty lucky. I've had a chance to be around a lot of guys that know the game and I try to learn from everyone that I play with," Lucas said. "Learning and having chemistry with my teammates is essential for us to be a team to be reckoned with. That's pretty much the big thing they tell me."
Playing for a young and talented Bellaire High School team, Lucas has emerged as the team's top scorer and shooter all the while being the team's top playmaker and creator. A bit small in size, he plays with his mind and knows, as expected, how to make the right play at the right time.
No surprise, high major schools are involved in his recruitment. Lucas said Texas, North Carolina and Kentucky have emerged as the top options.
"That's the three big ones I'm liking right now," Lucas said. "It's still real early."
Lucas will also pilot the talented Houston Hoops program this summer. The team should be one of the top AAU squads on the circuit.