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KU target R.J. Hampton, at Nike EYBL event, says he has nothing left to prove in high school

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R.J. Hampton during his official visit to Kansas

R.J. Hampton during his official visit to Kansas by Matt Scott

It was a big weekend for Kansas basketball recruiting, both in the 2019 class that still has plenty of holes to fill, and beyond.

The KU coaching staff welcomed Class of 2019 forward Tristan Enaruna to town for an official visit over the weekend and also was busy tracking some of the top players in future classes all over the country.

Here’s a quick recap of one of the biggest stories that came up this on a vibrant recruiting trail.

Class of 2020 guard R.J. Hampton, in a starring role at the Nike EYBL event in Atlanta, Hampton delivered a monster night in one of the showcase games, going for 41 points and 6 assists in a loss by AAU squad Drive Nation.

While the loud performance on the floor certainly was noticed, it was comments made by Hampton and his father off the court that likely stood out more.

With the 6-foot-5 guard from Little Elm, Texas, still trying to decide whether to reclassify into the 2019 class of stay in the 2020 class (where he is ranked No. 5 overall by Rivals.com), Hampton offered a hint at where he might be headed.

“I don’t think I have anything left in high school to prove to anybody,” Hampton said, according to ESPN.com’s Jeff Borzello.

Shortly after that, Hampton’s father, Rod Hampton, met with a small group of media members in attendance and, according to Borzello, said there was “a better than 50 percent chance” that his son reclassifies and is playing college basketball somewhere this winter.

Hampton, who has a final four of Kansas, Memphis, Duke and Kentucky, reminded people over the weekend that KU held a special place in his heart.

“Coach Self has been on me real hard,” said Hampton, according to CatsIllustrated.com. “He was my first blue blood type of offer. With him, (it’s), ‘You can come in and get us back to the Final Four.’ With the guys they might have coming back, they don’t have any commitments from any top guys yet. They could be scary.”

One other notable Hampton soundbite from the weekend came from his father, who talked about his tight relationship with the KU coaching staff.

"Coach Jerrance Howard is like family to me," Rod Hampton said, according to JayhawkSlant.com. "I mean, we can talk about anything and be comfortable. It doesn't matter if I call him at 3 in the afternoon or 3 at night, he's going to pick up and vice versa. He's just like family.

"I would feel very, very comfortable dropping R.J. off at Kansas right now with Jerrance Howard and the coaching staff at Kansas. I would have no problem at all and would feel very comfortable with R.J. playing at Kansas with Jerrance and the staff. We are definitely comfortable with the coaching staff."

Comments

Jesse Johnson 3 months, 3 weeks ago

Dang. That is sounding very promising. Hopefully Coach K can keep his paws off this one and let KU have at least one top recruit for next year.

Frederick Heckel 3 months, 3 weeks ago

Duke doesn't have any scholarships left to give.

Brett McCabe 3 months, 3 weeks ago

“I don’t think I have anything left in high school to prove to anybody,”

Now I call that Team Spirit! If anyone exemplifies what it means to be a part of the Jayhawk community, it's a guy who feels he has nothing left to prove to anybody. I mean, really? Who should he have to prove anything to? He's clearly the greatest basketball player (and most humble) to grace this choking earth. My goodness, I'm just happy that he let us all into his inner thinking.

No question that Coach Dollar Bill has found a unique gem, here. He's a special talent, a special kid. He has nothing left to prove to anybody. Love the attitude. The warmth is flowing over me right now. Do you feel like I do? I do wonder if he'll be able to complete the second half of the crowd chant that starts with "Rock Chalk..."

DeMarcus Addison 3 months, 3 weeks ago

nothing wrong with his statement.....if he wants to reclassify then fine, it obviously means he kept up his GRADES to qualify.....since when has that ever been a bad thing to graduate early

Jay Scott 3 months, 3 weeks ago

An interesting contrast between RJ and BM. Neither have anything left to prove. Both are immensely entertaining. One in a positive way, one in a sad and disturbing way.

RJ's track record in high school basketball is beyond dispute. As such, he's saving opponents further embarrassment and giving others a chance to shine. Very positive.

BM's emotional instability and derangement are beyond dispute. As such, he's unwilling to save himself further embarrassment and is incensed that others shine. Very sad and disturbing.

Maybe BM could learn from RJ.

Titus Canby 3 months, 3 weeks ago

I suggest he has one more thing to prove. Graduation.

Does anyone know how kids graduate from high school in 3 years? Summer school every year? Super heavy loads every semester with playing on both the high school team and AAU?

Max Ledom 3 months, 3 weeks ago

Big yikes, talking about a 17 year old kid this way. I think they need to cut you off at whatever bar you're commenting from.

Robert Brock 3 months, 3 weeks ago

Yo, Snacks! Y’all better close this deal.

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