October 22, 2013

Stone talks UNC, recruitment

Colorado Springs -- Walking onto the courts in Colorado Springs for the USA mini-camp, Diamond Stone was one of the 2015 big men with the most name recognition amongst his peers. The 6-10, 255-pound junior from Milwaukee (Wis.) Dominican quickly showed why, as he came out of the gates, using his wide-shoulders and superior strength to establish post position with ease.

He went to war with many of well-respected post players such as Thomas Bryant, Daniel Giddens, Myles Turner and Ivan Rabb.

"He's one of the toughest players to guard here," said Bryant, who battled Stone with sheer intensity and physicality. "He just puts his big body on you and once he has his legs where he wants them, it's pretty tough to move him."

Stone showed the ability to seal his defender on his back-side and he can go to either shoulder to score. He just has a great feel for angles, how to position himself and he gives his teammates a great entry level pass to get him the ball where he can score.

Stone told TarHeelIllustrated.com that the competition in Colorado Springs brings out the best in him.

"It's a great feeling actually," said Stone of being there. "It's great going against all the guys and just competing and making each other better."

Being one of the top true centers in the class of 2015 has drawn many eyes and visitors to Milwaukee. Schools covet Stone for his back-to-the-basket skills and the fact that they know he'll be ready to make an impact as a freshman since his size and strength are already on par with most college centers at nearly 260-pounds.

He says his recruitment has been consistent and the attention has been a blanket of interest from many schools.

"Pretty much everybody," said Stone when asked who was making him feel like a priority. "A lot of schools have come into my high school and a lot of schools are just showing me love."

The University of North Carolina is strongly in the picture with Stone, who holds dozens of offers from division one college programs.

"Roy Williams and his staff have been to my school," said Stone.

He says that Roy Williams has made it known that he covets him and thinks that he's already a terrific talent. The Tar Heels are looking to sign two post players in the class and Stone was one of the first big men that the UNC coach offered.

"He just told me that he's looking at me and that he loves my game. He said he wouldn't be there if I wasn't good. He just tells me to keep working and try to get better," said Stone.

Many other schools such as Wisconsin, Indiana, Duke, Depaul, Illinois, Maryland, Arizona, UConn, Marquette, UCLA and Georgetown have also put offers on the table for Stone, but he's not going to make any serious moves until next year, his senior season.

"My dad handles much of the recruitment but I talk to some of the schools sometimes when I can. I will probably take my official visits during my senior year."

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