According to the Memphis Commercial Appeal, Dorian Finney-Smith and his mother (who’s been a strong force in his recruitment and decision-making process) left their official visit from Memphis yesterday and were highly impressed. Desiree Finney-Jones told the paper that head coach Josh Pastner left a great impression on her and her son and that the arena, dorms and practice facilities all stood out. At this point, I’m not sure where this thing is going. And I’m pretty sure nobody else does either. Even the national recruiting insiders have been mum on the whole situation. It appears like Florida won’t get a visit and there were reports over the weekend that said Texas was eliminated from his list. That essentially makes it a 3 (possibly 4 if you count Florida) horse race. Now, while Louisville is clearly the thoroughbred in this race – the Man O’ War, Secretariat or Affirmed, if you will – I still think it’s a longshot that the Cards land the 6-7 forward’s services. Though there should be ample playing time in two years (when he’s eligible after sitting out) and the team is poised for a title run this year (which could provide invaluable practice competition and a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity), there are other factors at work here, and these other schools have their pluses, as well. The fact that he left both Memphis and Iowa State without committing on the spot, however, has to be encouraging for Louisville fans. Anyway, he’s told multiple outlets that he will make a decision before leaving for the Kevin Durant skills camp which starts on June 27th. The clock is ticking.
Desiree Finney-Jones, the mother of Virginia Tech transfer Dorian Finney-Smith, said their mid-week official visit to the University of Memphis “very much exceeded expectations.”Finney-Jones said Memphis coach Josh Pastner made a great first impression.“He’s of a different era than the other coaches I’ve talked to,” Finney-Jones said. “He’s coming on a whole lot different. You know how they say 30 is the new 40? There it is. He’s setting the standards high.”She said she didn’t get a chance to meet the team, but she did chat with retiring Memphis athletic director RC Johnson.
“Everybody was close-knit,” Finney-Jones said. “I like the closeness. I know they haven’t been together too long, but I got the sense and feel that they had been.”Finney-Jones and her son got a full tour of campus, the practice facility, and FedExForum.“The Forum was huge,” Finney-Jones said. “Everything on campus was close. That’s what I liked. Everything wasn’t too spread out. He’ll be able to walk to practice from his dorm. I’ll be checking on that. Him waking up and being able to walk to the practice facility is a plus.“Memphis was very impressive.”Finney-Smith averaged 6.3 points and seven rebounds last season for the Hokies. He will have to sit out next year per NCAA transfer rules and will have three years of eligibility remaining.As we reported Tuesday, Finney-Jones said her son will not take any more recruiting visits. The 6-8 forward is down to Memphis, Florida, Louisville, and Iowa State.The plan remains for the family, which includes Finney-Smith’s older brother Ben, to sit down and make a decision before the Kevin Durant camp later this month.“I’ve looked at all the situations,” Finney-Jones said. “I’ve met all the coaches. The final decision has to come from him, because he’s the one who has to sit for a year. I’m cool with any of the four that he picks.”