After putting up gaudy numbers as a junior in Nashville, Tenn., Jamont Gordon transferred to Oak Hill Academy to improve as both a basketball player and a student. The move paid off for the 6-foot-3, 225-pound wing player as he learned to be more of a team player playing along other talented players and has made progress towards qualifying academically. Tonight, Gordon has made another decision as to where he will play his college basketball next year.
"I'm going to Mississippi State," said Gordon, who is the No. 15 ranked player in the Rivals150. "I like the conference, and the coaches treated me really well on my visit."
Gordon, who was previously scheduled to visit Tennessee this weekend, switched his visit to Mississippi State after the strong recruiting effort by the Mississippi State coaching staff on the first day of the contact period. Head Coach Rick Stansbury and Assistant Coach Phil Cunningham were on the Oak Hill campus early that morning to visit Gordon and spent most of the day with him before flying to Nashville to meet with his mother.
Expecting a visit from the Tennessee staff on that same day, Gordon was very disappointed to only receive a phone call late that night from Coach Bruce Pearl.
"I'm not going to visit Tennessee," Gordon said. "I'm going to sign with Mississippi State on the first day.
"I had been told that Tennessee was going to visit me on the first contact day, and no one ever called me to tell me they were not coming. I guess it was more important for them to visit Brandan Wright and Tyler Smith. That was kind of insulting to me. I didn't hear from Coach Pearl until late that night."
Beyond what did and did not happen on that first day of the contact period, Gordon has a golden opportunity to be the go to man for the Bulldogs next year with the graduation of Winsome Frazier and Lawrence Roberts.
"I looked at Tennessee's roster, and they have C.J. Watson coming back and Chris Lofton back and Tyler Smith coming in, so it was a situation where I might have to even come off the bench.
"At Mississippi State I can start and put up numbers right away. They said their plan for me was to get me the ball and have me put up offensive numbers for them."
Gordon, who is still working to qualify academically, is hoping that playing in the Mississippi State program will help prepare him for the next level of basketball competition.
"I feel really good about this situation," he said. "I think Coach Stansbury can help me with my game and help me get to the NBA.
"I know I need to improve my pull up jumper and my shooting. My ball handling needs to get a little better. If I get better at these things, I know I can play on the next level."