CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. — Five-star recruit Thon Maker announced Thursday night that he will no longer attempt to play college basketball next season.
Instead, Maker said he plans to play one more full season of high school basketball and graduate next June. He also said he would take some college recruiting visits in November.
The 7-footer from Sudan played this past season for Orangeville Prep in Canada. Before that, he was a standout player for The Carlisle School in Virginia. Maker said earlier this year that he would try to reclassify to 2015 and play college basketball this upcoming season.
His guardian, Ed Smith, later told reporters that Maker had more academic work to complete and enrolling in college in December and playing the last half of the 2015-16 season would be a more realistic outcome. That won’t happen either.
“I tried to get in the 2015 class. It just didn’t work out, so I’m going to stay,” Maker said from the NBPA Top 100 Camp. “I’ll make it official here that I’ll stay (in 2016) and just play it out. Take my visits in November and play another year with my brother.”
Maker’s younger brother, Matur, is a standout player in the class of 2017 and one of his teammates at Orangeville Prep.
When he was asked if he’ll ever play college basketball, Maker was absolute.
“Of course,” he said.
UK, Indiana and Arizona State were widely considered the favorites in Maker’s recruitment, though he pointed out Thursday night that he has never actually released a list of schools.
“I don’t have a list, but you can kind of tell some of the frontrunners,” he said.
Maker didn’t specify those frontrunners, but he did visit Indiana in March and spoke highly of the new coaching staff at Arizona State. He was considered a top-10 recruit in the class of 2015.