Darius Nelson said all spring and summer that UTEP had been making up ground in his recruitment and last weekend the Sacramento (Calif.) Sheldon small forward got the opportunity to visit with coach Tim Floyd's club.
Let's just say UTEP will definitely remain in the running.
"It was great," Nelson said. "It was a great time to experience the college life. The players were telling me a lot about what goes on out there. They were telling me how a day at UTEP really is. It's a college town. You can't go anywhere without fans asking for autographs and they know who you are.
"I'm lost for words. That's how great it was. Coach Floyd is really, really, really the man out there."
Nelson liked his UTEP visit but has some other trips planned before making a decision. The three-star prospect will visit Loyola Marymount this weekend and also plans to see Fresno State and Oklahoma at some point this fall.
Georgetown, Kentucky, North Carolina State, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, USC and others are listed as having offered Nelson, a 6-foot-5 prospect who can play inside or outside, but he's starting to narrow his list and focus on a select group of schools.
Nelson said early in the summer that he was especially looking forward to July so numerous coaches could see him play with Team Odom. While things went well for him he was also disappointed that his AAU team didn't get to more tournaments so he could get even more exposure.
"It went pretty well," Nelson said. "It could have been better. Now I'm just working to get better. We played in the Fab 48 Tournament in Vegas and we played in a few local LA tournaments. We didn't get a chance to get out there like we were supposed to but we made the best of what it was. I played great but I could've played better.
"I had drawn a lot of college coaches' attention but I wasn't able to do what I really wanted to do because we weren't able to go to the big-time tournaments and play the big-time teams. Mainly I did what I could do when the lights were on and made clutch plays and played really big. That's all I could do."