ROCK HILL, SC
During his introductory press conference as South Carolina men’s basketball coach, Lamont Paris emphasized the importance of recruiting top talent from the state.
“Recruiting is going to be a big part of what we do, and that starts here in the state of South Carolina,” Paris said back in March. “My staff and I will know every young man from this state that has the potential to play at this level.”
To that end, Paris and his staff were there from beginning to end Friday on the first day of the South Carolina Basketball Coaches Live event at Rock Hill Events Center.
Paris and assistant coaches Tim Buckley, Tanner Bronson and Eddie Shannon were front and center to watch both games featuring Christ Church Class of 2023 big man Jordan Butler and Lexington Class of 2024 guard Cam Scott, who are both nationally-ranked prospects in their classes.
247Sports Composite ranks Butler as a four-star prospect and 52nd-nationally for Class of 2023.
Butler has the attention of the new staff at USC as they work to establish a relationship with him. He did not have close contact with the previous USC staff. The rising senior took an unofficial visit to South Carolina last Sunday, where he and his family met with Paris and the coaches.
“I really like coach Paris. The whole staff. It was a real good experience and got to meet everybody,” Butler said Friday. “They have been texting me almost every day. They tell me I’m No. 1 on their list and things like that. It is a good thing to hear.”
John Butler Sr, Jordan’s dad, came away with a good feeling after meeting with the USC coaching staff.
“It was good, actually sit down and listen to his vision that was an important step for us and for them. He can explain this is my staff, this is my plan, here is what we are and this is what we are trying to do,” said Butler Sr., who is also Christ Church’s head coach. “His vision was he likes bigs, running things through the bigs. We watched some stuff and he showed Jordan how he could use him based on stuff he was doing at Wisconsin, Chattanooga and were able to see it.”
Despite being 6-foot-11, Butler is more perimeter-oriented than a normal post player, so having a coaching staff that knows has to use a versatile big man is important to him
Butler has the ability to hit from outside, hitting 26-of-42 3-pointers this season at Christ Church. He had hit several of them against Irmo in the second game on Friday.
Last season, Butler averaged 14.4 points, 8.1 rebounds and 3.8 blocks.
“Main thing is knowing how to use a versatile player. Not everyone knows how to use a 6-foot-11 shooter. So that is an important thing on my list,” Jordan Butler said. “On the clips he showed, they had good bigs that were versatile, knocking down shots, passing the ball and that is my type of player.”
In addition to USC, Butler has offers from Missouri, Florida State, Auburn, Georgia Tech, Georgia, Wake Forest, Virginia Tech. FSU, Georgia and Virginia Tech coaches also were there on Friday.
FSU has a good relationship with the Butler family. Butler’s brother, John, played at Florida State this season before declaring for the NBA Draft. He is hoping to be a late first or early second-round pick in Thursday’s draft.
Missouri assistant Cy Young was on FSU’s staff that recruited his brother before joining Dennis Gates and the Tigers this offseason.
Butler said he plans on taking official visits to FSU and Missouri this summer and South Carolina in the fall. He can take two more visits as each player can take up to five official visits during his senior year.
Butler hopes to have a decision sometime before the start of his senior season in November.
“We take them to places he is interested in and let him hear things. Ultimately he has to make the choice and go there,” John Butler Sr. said.