LAS VEGAS, NEVADA -- Mustafa Shakur (right), one of the top point guards in the country, sat out his team's second pool play game on Monday night at the adidas Big Time Tournament.
Shakur, a 6-3 floor general from Friends Central H.S. in Wynnewood, Penn., simply couldn't play in a 67-59 loss to the Southeast Pump and Run squad at Green Valley H.S.
Earlier in the day against Salt Lake Metro, Shakur tried to play with an injured hip, but found his effectiveness greatly diminished.
"I fell on my hip at the ABCD Camp, and I talked to the doctor, and what I have is a hip pointer," Shakur said. "He said I should stay off it for a week, but I tried to give it a go because I want to help the team out and win."
"But I just couldn't do it and I didn't want to hurt the team," he continued. "I can't really slide and play defense the way that I want to. My lateral movement and jumping especially -- I just couldn't go."
Shakur has pledged official visits this fall to Arizona and N.C. State. In fact, he is tentatively slated to visit Tucson for the Wildcats' Midnight Madness festivities in October. No weekend has been designated yet for his trip to N.C. State.
Other schools still in the picture for Shakur's services include UConn, Syracuse, Villanova and North Carolina.
"I actually haven't narrowed things down yet," Shakur said. "I want to get a chance to talk to some other schools and see where it's going, and then narrow it down. I don't want to let them hear it over the internet."
When asked for a pecking order or top list of schools, RivalsHoops.com's number 27 player in the class of 2003 shrugged and said he doesn't really have one. But does the fact that he's slated trips to a pair of schools in the fall by mid-July indicate where he might be leaning?
"You can read between the lines if you want to, but I'd rather not say anything about it," Shakur said with a chuckle.
It also remains to be seen how active a player North Carolina becomes in Shakur's recruiting process. Prior to leaving for the Big Time Tournament, Shakur had a chance to speak with Tar Heel Head Coach Matt Doherty via telephone.
"I talked to him two days before I came here," he said.
Last year, North Carolina recruited one of the top point guards in the country in South Carolina's Raymond Felton. However, many feel that if Felton were to have a big freshman year at UNC, that he might test the NBA waters.
The Tar Heel program could be preparing for that scenario, but it's a long way from being able to say just how valid an assumption it is.
We'll keep you posted on Shakur's situation in the weeks and months to come, so stay tuned!