When we asked Duke Report readers to submit questions for a special interview we were going to have with Tyus Jones less than 24 hours ahead of time, we didn’t expect the dozens upon dozens of great questions that we ended up receiving. But thanks to you guys, we ended up having a great interview with Duke’s top target and the best player in the class of 2014 as we conducted an interview asking him questions solely from Duke Report’s readers’ submissions. You can follow Jones on Twitter at @Tyusjones06.
What are you looking for when choosing your school (Jason Norman)?
Tyus Jones: “I’m looking at their coaching staff, how they coach their team, coaching philosophies, the educational part of the school, other recruits that they’re recruiting and the players that they have on the team right now. There’s a lot of small stuff that adds up versus one big thing.”
What is your greatest strength that doesn’t show in the box score and your greatest weakness that doesn’t show in the box score (Will Kountis)?
Tyus Jones: “I think my biggest strength is probably my basketball IQ. I think I have a good mind for the game of basketball. My weakness is probably focusing on the small things like boxing out and getting on the floor.”
Who first introduced you to the game of basketball and who most encouraged you to continue to pursue your dream? What drives you to stay focused (Jacqueline Hammersmith)?
Tyus Jones: “My parents. Ever since I can remember, I’ve had a ball in my hands or I’ve been in the gym. I definitely have to say my parents because ever since I can remember basketball has been a part of my life. Basketball is just the game that I love. Without it, if I didn’t have it in my life then my life wouldn’t feel normal. Every time I step out on the court I just try to always get to that next level.”
Who would you compare your game to (Blake Klause)?
Tyus Jones: “I don’t know who I compare myself to. I hear different opinions of who I resemble but I try to take different bits and pieces of different elite point guards and learn from what they do well.”
Tyus Jones: “There’s a good chance he would [join us]. We have some similar schools recruiting us on our list so if it turns out one of those schools is a school we decide to go to then I think it’s a good chance.”
If you could play a game of one on one against anyone, past or present, who would it be (Joe)?
Tyus Jones: “I think if you ask anyone that it’s Michael Jordan just because he’s the greatest player of all time. For present, I’d have to say Chris Paul just because that’s a point guard that I look up to right now and love watching his game.”
What do you believe will be the biggest thing you will have to adjust to going from playing PG in high school to playing the position in college (Chris Summerville)?
Tyus Jones: “I just think every time you move up a level the quickness and speed of the game dramatically increases. I think getting used to that will take some time and there are some strong dudes out there so the strength part could take getting used to too.”
What are some of the intangibles or lesser looked at aspects of a coaching staff that attracts your attention (Semper Fidelis)?
Tyus Jones: “I’d say a relationship with their point guards is what I look for in a coach and a school. Also how they use their point guard and implement them in their system.”
I heard you reenacted the Austin Rivers shot in the Dean Dome, is this true (Chasen Ross)?
Tyus Jones: “Yeah, it just kind of came up. We were in the North Carolina gym shooting around and that was somewhat recent so that’s a memory that sticks out from that gym so that’s how that happened. I think we all made it after a few tries [laughing].”
Do you have any pre-game rituals before you get ready to play a game (Freddie Hodges)?
Tyus Jones: “I always just listen to music, that’s pretty much it. I always have my headphones on before games. I listen to Drake, Lil Wayne, Kendrick Lamar and J. Cole.”