R.J. Barrett is going to have his choice of schools when it comes time to make a decision.
All the evidence you need for that is this: his AAU coach says the four schools recruiting him the hardest right now are among college basketball's bluest of bluebloods.
"He's wide open; the schools that he's hearing from the most are Duke, Kentucky, Texas and Kansas," Dwayne Washington of UPlay Canada told SNY.tv. "Those four haven't offered but they're hitting him the most."
Washington said Duke's Jeff Capel, Kentucky's John Calipari, Texas' Shaka Smart and Kansas' Kurtis Townsend have been the lead recruiters on Barrett, a 6-foot-7 wing who is the son of former St. John's guard, and Canada Basketball Executive Vice President and Assistant General Manager Rowan Barrett.
R.J. Barrett, 16, helped lead UPlay Canada to the U16 final of the Peach Jam, where they came up short against All Ohio Red last Sunday.
This summer, Barrett also trained with the Canadian National Team and play with the Canadian U17 team at the World Championship in Spain, where he averaged 18.4 points, 4.6 rebounds and 2.3 assists in seven games. A slew of colleges flew over to watch the event.
Barrett holds offers from UCLA, Oklahoma, USC and Baylor, with Oregon and Arizona and Indiana expected to offer soon, Washington said.
As for his upside, the sky is the limit on Barrett.
"His upside is like a cross between Paul George and James Harden," Washington said. "Everybody is really enamored with his play-making ability and passing and individual defense. I think they were really surprised with that."
He added: "The play-making ability is really what set him apart with all the bluebloods, who are like, 'Wait a minute, he can play without the ball. He does not need the ball.'"
Washington and his father are handling the recruitment, and Washington said he speaks with Rowan Barrett "five times a day."
As for Barrett's future, Washington said there's a "70 percent chance" Barrett will return to Montverde (FL) Academy this year with point guard Andrew Nembhard. Simi Shittu, a Class of 2018 wing and fellow Canadian, is transferring but has yet to announce his new destination.
"We're still evaluating all of that for Andrew and R.J.," Washington said of high school plans. "We will make a final decision at the beginning of August. We just want to sit down with them and see how we can help them and how the guys fit into their plans."