Watch Hemet, California center Joe Burton for 10 minutes and one comparison comes to mind. The West Valley High product plays a lot like NBA bound big man Kevin Love. And Burton is perfectly fine with that.
"I watch him and UCLA a lot. People around my area compare me to Kevin Love because of the outlet passes and stuff," Burton said. "I think we both share the same play for the love of the game mentality. We both play with the same sort of mindset."
Burton's mindset, outlet passing, body type, good hands and productivity inside the paint is somewhat similar to the outbound Bruin from Portland, Oregon. While Burton isn't projected as a first round draft pick like Love, the Rivals150 senior-to-be is headed to the Division I level.
"I have a couple new schools and I've picked up some new offers. It's been great getting the calls from the coaches," Burton said.
Burton said Utah, Gonzaga, Central Florida, San Diego State and Marquette have offered him a scholarship to date. Florida and Tennessee are also interested, he said.
"I think Utah and Gonzaga are the most serious about me. They came all the way out to see me and there aren't many schools that have done that so far," Burton said. "Billy Donovan came out down the season to see me. San Diego State, too. I was impressed that Billy Donovan came out to see. No one comes out to Hemet. That's no man's land.
"I want to go wherever I can play. Location isn't going to be an issue. If I go East Coast, my family will go wherever I go. That's what they said so I'm open to just about anything."
Burton averaged 21 points, 16 rebounds, 4.7 assists, 2.6 steals and 2.4 blocks per game as a junior at West Valley High School. He was one of the top performers at the Arizona Cactus Classic and the Pangos All-American camp.
"I want to get my midrange shot down pat. My court awareness could get better. You can always learn new stuff," Burton said. "My basketball IQ can get better. Just learning the tricks of the trade and more game tactics. I want to get better as a total player."