Markelle Fultz, a highly ranked 2016 shooting guard, visited Tucson earlier this week to tour the Arizona campus and meet players and coaches. Point Guard U caught up with Fultz afterwards to discuss his visit.
“It was good, I got to see a lot of the campus,” Fultz said. “It was my first time out there. It was good to see the players and how they practice, how hard they work. It was also great meeting coach Miller and seeing him in person again.”
Fultz toured the campus with coaches Sean Miller and Book Richardson. Fultz, who is open about wanting to be an accountant, paid special attention to the business center.
“Coach Sean Miller took us around,” said Fultz. “Coach Book was with us too. We went around the campus, they explained different things about the school. Coach Book told me about the business center because I want to be an accountant. They showed me all around.”
Despite his focus on academics, Fultz was well aware of his primary reason for visiting.
“My favorite part of the visit was practice,” Fultz told PGU. “Getting to see the way they compete, the different things they do in the program.”
Fultz’s visit was during the end of the second summer session, but he was still able to get an idea of Arizona’s college atmosphere.
“The first night of my visit a lot of kids had finals, so we didn’t do much,” Fultz said. “The last night we hung out and played video games. I had a good time, the players showed me how they have fun.”
Fultz liked what we saw in Tucson, observing student life and paying attention to the layout of the school.
“It’s a big school, but it’s small for the basketball players,” said Fultz. “The way they can get around, the access they have. And they have an apple store right on campus, that was cool.”
Fultz and the coaching staff spent plenty of time discussing the future. Those conversations usually focus on what the program can do for a player, and the other way around.
“The coaches talked to me about coming there,” Fultz said. “They said I would be a good fit and explained how they can see me playing there. They mentioned what kinds of things I could do on the court and how I could help the team.”
Fultz’s relationship with Sean Miller is still growing, and the visit played a large role in the development.
“Our relationship is getting a lot better,” Fultz told PGU. “We’ve been talking about the way I’d fit in at Arizona. I got to know him a lot more on this visit than just on the phone.”
While Fultz is still getting to know coach Miller, he’s always been comfortable with coach Book, his lead recruiter.
“Coach Book is like an uncle to me,” Fultz said. “We don’t just talk about basketball. We talk about life off the court. It’s a real good relationship.”
Fultz is saying all the right things when asked about his recruitment. He maintains that all the schools on his list are in the mix, and that nobody stands out at this time.
“Arizona is in the mix, so that’s good,” Fultz said. “So are Louisville, Kentucky, Miami, Xavier, Maryland, Washington, and other schools too.”
Fultz didn’t have much time to rest after his trip to Tucson. He briefly flew back to the east coast and is already in Seattle to visit the University of Washington.
Fultz plans to take all his visits, but didn’t rule out the possibility of committing early.
“If I feel like I’m ready, then I’ll get my list together and make a decision,” said Fultz. “I’ll do what’s comfortable, I don’t have a set plan.”
Fultz shot up the rankings this year, going from relatively unknown to a top ten player in his class. The quick rise has many people describing him as a one and done. But Fultz doesn’t pay attention to the hype.
“It’s nice to hear people say that, but my mindset is not to be a one and done,” Fultz said. “Of course I’d like to have the opportunity because of what that means about my growth between now and then, but my mindset is that I’m a four year player and I need to improve every day and commit to getting better. That’s all I’m worried about right now.”