The Boiling Point: Big-time 2013 basketball recruit Derek Willis may be second-guessing his pledge to Purdue.
Conflicting reports about the status of highly-touted 2013 basketball recruit Derek Willis’ verbal commitment to Purdue surfaced on Thursday. First, both Jody Demling of The Courier-Journal in Kentucky and GoldandBlackillustrated.com reported that Willis had backed away from Purdue coach Matt Painter and the Boilers. It appears that information came from Willis’ high school coach.
Here’s what GoldandBlackillustrated.com tweeted after talking with his coach.
"Derek Willis has de-committed from #Purdue, his HS coach just said."
"Derek Willis’ HS coach said Willis said he wants to visit UK and Louisville. Not sure if #Purdue will still ‘want him.’"
"‘I hope they do,’ Troy Barr said when asked if #Purdue would continue to recruit Willis."
Now, it appears that decision might not be final. Derek’s father, Del, told Demling it’s not official.
"“We have to make sure that he really wants to decommit,” the elder Willis said. “There’s a lot of trust there with the Purdue staff. So we have to talk the next few days and make sure that he’s not making a mistake.“I know a lot of people would love to see him in red or blue. But he has to make sure he’s doing the right thing here.”"
Soon after the 6-foot-8 wing pledged to Painter, Del was quoted saying their word was gold and there would be no switching schools. Obviously, Willis’ sky-rocketing stock has changed that a bit.
Here’s what Willis told Demling back in April after making his decision.
"“I thought about it the other night and I just thought it was the best decision for me,” Willis said. “It’s a great academic school and (the coaching staff) are really trustworthy people.”"
We will continue to update this situation as more information comes available. Whatever happens it looks like it will all be resolved by Sunday.