adidas Nations: Quick chat with new IU commit Peter Jurkin

I only caught part of the Africa-Latin American third-place bout tonight at the University of Illinois-Chicago Pavilion. But one thing that stuck out to me about Jurkin beyond his obvious size? He was impressively fast, and smooth, running down the court as his team pushed the pace in the fourth quarter.

I know it has little wow factor, but for a kid that’s yet to fill out his near 7-foot frame and still has two years left of high school, I think it says something that he runs the floor well instead of being awkward or out of sorts.

Below is my brief chat with Jurkin, immediately after he committed on-air to IU and before he was whisked away to other media members.

So you just committed to IU, and have two years left of high school. What factored into your decision to commit early?

I [made the decision] early because I wanted to be focused on school and basketball — try to not think about what college [I'm] going to.

What was it about IU that made you want to commit?

I like the coach. I like the program. I believe when I get there he’s going to make me better and try and make me go to the next level.

What are you looking to work on in the next two years, and maybe what has the coaching staff told you they want you to work on? Is it adding some size to your frame?

I’ve been trying to [add size] … But I’ve had too many games, too many practices [to focus on it]. But this year I’m going to try and be in the weight program and try and [get] big. [I'll also work on] my jump shot, my dribble, handles and everything.

Photo credit: Jack Arent/adidas

  • GFDave

    I attended one of his games last winter. He has a flat jumper and didn’t really look to take it. De Matha looked for him to be the energy, rebounder, defender and to get out on the break. The players on that team had very specific roles and his didn’t include much shooting.

  • Casey

    Has anyone else heard that UNC has also recently jumped into the mix with Perea?

  • Anonymous

    If I’m not mistaken one or two of those dunks was from a video that was shot when he was still in high school and had come to Btwn to visit Mo and before he had said anything about where he was going to play at. Something tells me that he already had a good idea where he wanted to go and the fact that he was a good friend of Mo’s probably figured into that at least a decent amount I would think. Anybody seeing any parallels here when it comes to PJ and HP ? Not saying it makes us a lock for HP but I am saying that it does count for something and these days in the wild world of recruiting you need every little edge you can get.

    One down and more to go. Go get ‘em signed up Tom !

  • Roninjeffersonville

    Yahoo sports has North Carolina as his high interest along with IU and Baylor. No one else does. Not sure he even has a offer from them.

    Hanner Perea – Yahoo! Sports

  • Nwfhoosier

    never mind, they didnt let my comment through. whatever man.

  • Nwfhoosier

    never mind, they didnt let my comment through. whatever man.

  • Anonymous

    You could be wrong, I could be wrong. I did not say “first round” draft pick. A solid 2nd round pick to the right team. Detroit got a lot of mileage out of Deshaun Prince, who I think is a very similar player.

  • HoosierFromCT

    haha no problem. great mix

  • Anonymous

    Tayshaun Prince. He went in the first round, and he’s way more athletic than Watford. And while you didn’t say “first round”, that’s where Hayward went. I guess when Watford’s talents are “far more” than Hayward’s that will still translate to a second round pick? Even though Hayward went 9th overall? Or do you know more about basketball than Jerry Slone, and every other NBA GM, and every analyst? And why in the world would Watford leave early to become a second round pick?

    In this case, I won’t be wrong.

  • Anonymous

    Thanks for the Tayshaun reference. I don’t think that Watford will leave early to be a second round pick. I do think that he will be selected in the NBA draft at some point. I do think that he is athletic. I do think that he will have a more productive pro career than Hayward. NBA coaches, analysts etc. make many errors in draft picks every year (check out the Pacers record recently). There are many good 2nd round picks that have had long and rewarding NBA careers: A Mason, R Lewis, C boozer, M Redd, M Ginobili, M Price, D Rodman, G Arenas, etc.

  • ArtistFormerlyKnownAs_Aceman07

    Explain to me one thing, and I’m not trying to be a jerk. If CW is truly athletic then how in the h*ll did he get so many layups and bunnies blocked last year???

  • Ronbaysinger

    I believe that last year VO averaged a double double for the season in points and rebounds.
    He can jump! I could be wrong but I think he had these stats last year. Points 11.9, rebounds 10.3
    and blocks 3.6. I got these off the IU web site

  • Anonymous

    He lacked strength, confidence and experience while playing out of position as a PF against strong experienced men. However he still averaged 12 p/game, 6r/game and shot 80% FT on a 10-21 team where you only had to guard Jones and Watford to win the game.

  • ArtistFormerlyKnownAs_Aceman07

    Outoftheloop, I stand corrected. I think CW may have just been tired last year and that’s why we didn’t see some more athleticism out of him because I watched some youtube highlights from Christian and he certainly looked athletic on those clips rising up for dunks and put back dunks so hopefully we see some of those hops this year!

  • Anonymous

    Except when they had to beat Gonzaga for the Championship. Then VO led the way with 23 or so points. He did everything, rebound, defend, shoot from 3, shoot from 2, dunk.

  • hoosierfan87

    I was just looking at scouts rankings and happened to see hanner pereas profile…it says baylor hasnt even offered him a scholarship. does anyone know if that is true?

  • Dr. J

    If Zeller goes to IU he becomes an instant legend. No matter what his basketball future holds, he will have many,many options in whatever he decides to do, especially if he comes back to IN down the road in his life. Let’s say he goes to UNC, injures his knee or something and is no longer able to produce enough on the court or to continue playing at a high level. His LIFE opportunities are SIGNIFICANTLY less because his “impact” on UNC fans/people will be MUCH less than IN people because of his home town being in IN. In my opinion, it is a no brainer from a common sense thought process. Consider it a business move if nothing less.

  • Anonymous

    It looks like Perea was at IU for an unofficial visit on Thursday. I think Jurkin signing seals the deal. Would Perea really go to IU the same week Jurkin signed if he was going to Baylor? The indystar reported that he and Patterson and Devin Davis were all there on Thursday.

  • Bleeding Crimson

    Great news if this is true. How good is your source?
    Alex, can you comment on this?
    BC

  • Marsh21

    The visit happened and was reported via the Indy Star amoung others. I think Illinoishoosier has a good point. Why would Perea take another visit to IU the same week Jurkin signed up? Perea has been on campus many times and I believe lives in Bloomington during the summer so I’m sure he has a lot of time to see the campus.

    I don’t think he’s even been to Baylor yet so it appears IU is in good shape. He needs to sign up soon as others will be all over him given some more time. Our 12 class could be sick if everything falls into place.

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