After a sizzling July showing, big man Jordan Williams is now in a position where he's going to have his pick on where to go for college. Four months ago, the 6-foot-9, 245-pound post from Torrington (Conn.) High School didn't think he'd be in this position.
Williams took his game to another level in July with the New England Playaz and finished his last AAU season out with a bang. He was one of the top surprises in Sin City and now his recruitment has exploded.
"I'll be the first to admit that back in the spring time I was behind and I was frustrated. Honestly, I didn't want to play with the Playaz anymore. I figured I wasn't good enough," Williams said. "I was hurting the team. I basically looked scared and I wasn't prepared. I was a step behind on everything. My moves were slower than everyone else's. The tempo was just above my head."
The game eventually slowed down, he said, and things became much clearer on the hardwood. Williams credits his improvement to his AAU coach and former Boston Celtics interim head coach John Carroll.
"Playing with coach Carroll just pushed me. To me, there are two kinds of players. There are those that who can take criticism and there are those who can't and take it all on the offensive," Williams said. "At first, I took it personally. Eventually I understood that what he was telling me was just to improve my game on the court. In June, when I was playing at a couple of other tournaments, I began to listen and learn to do what he was telling me to do. I understood more how to play and help my team."
With his improved play, big body, soft hands and soaring confidence, Williams has watched his recruitment take off.
Williams said he has offers from Georgetown, Maryland, Marquette, Villanova, Providence, Connecticut, St. John's, Xavier and Rhode Island while Wake Forest, Arizona, Pittsburgh, Siena and Seton Hall are showing interest.
He returned home on Sunday from Connecticut's elite camp. Did he ever imagine he'd be participating at such an event back in April?
"Absolutely not," Williams said emphatically. "I was getting ready to call a couple of schools just to get my name out there. I was trying to walk-on at some places if I had to. There were some MAAC schools and some lower end Atlantic 10 schools looking at me. I never thought I'd be in the position that I'm in now."
While he doesn't have any concrete dates for any other visits, Williams said he hopes to do so in the near future.
"I'd like to hit the road with my mom and dad and see a couple of schools that are within driving distance from my home," he said. "I'm going to sit down with my parents and decide where I'm going to go. I'm not too far from a couple of schools that are recruiting me.
"As of right now, there isn't anyone standing out only because it only really started towards the end of July. That's when I started getting the most calls. St. John's has been there before the spring. They've been there for a while but most of the schools just started to recruit me hard after the July period. So it's not like there is just one school that has stood out just yet.
"I've always said that I want to go to a school where I can make an impact. I want to go to a school that needs me and not just wants me. I want to make a difference wherever I go. It doesn't have to be close to home either. If it means I have to go to the West Coast, I'll go to the West Coast. If it means it's near my home, I'll go there. I want to go where it fits me the best."
The ride isn't over yet for the future Rivals150 prospect. He's just beginning and taking it all in at the moment.
"I'm fortunate and blessed to be in the situation that I'm in now," Williams said. "I'm just trying to take full advantage of it."