This is Amelia Rayno's third season on the Gophers men's basketball beat. She learned college basketball in North Carolina (Go Tar Heels!), where fanhood is not an option. In 2010, she joined the Star Tribune after graduating from Boston's Emerson College, which sadly had no exciting D-I college hoops to latch onto. Amelia has also worked on the sports desk at the Boston Globe and interned at the Detroit News.

  Follow Rayno on Twitter @AmeliaRayno

Gophers target Kaleb Joseph on Pitino: "He seems like a man of his word, and I really respect that"

Posted by: Amelia Rayno under College basketball Updated: July 25, 2013 - 12:34 PM

Kaleb Joseph is a 6-2 point guard from Massachusetts, who has become one of the Gophers main targets at floor general for the 2014 class. Currently, Joseph is playing at the Adidas Super 64 in Vegas, where he led Mass Rivals to a win on Wednesday with nine points, nine rebounds and four assists, according to GopherIllustrated.com writer Ryan James, who was there for the action. The rising senior, ranked No. 56 on Rivals, also has offers from Syracuse, Kansas State, Maryland, Providence and Pittsburgh, among others. I caught up with him over the phone after his win on Wednesday night to talk about his recruitment process so far.

What have the Gophers talked to you about when they reach out to you? Just the freedom I’d have at the point guard position and just being able to step in from day one and have an impact from day one in that system.

What do you like about new coach Richard Pitino? Coach Pitino and I, we talk all the time. I like that he’s the one that’s actively recruiting me, to me that says a lot. It shows that I’m a priority. And I see him at the games, so I know he means the things he says. He seems like a man of his word, and I really respect that.

What are some of the things you're looking for in your eventual landing spot? I’d say just the trust I have in the coaches because obviously leaving home, I’d trust them to develop me as a player, just to make me better. So I think trust it big. And obviously, playing time and – both of those things are something that [the Gophers] have.

You talk a lot about trust, and someone's word. Have you been surprised at all throughout the process, things coaches will say to you and the fakeness that exists out there? It’s a business, I totally get that. It comes along with it, obviously their jobs pretty much [require] it, soj it’s hard to trust many people, but I don’t know, I think, going through the recruiting process, it gets easier and easier to tell the real people from the fake people, the people who are just telling you what you want to hear. When you’re around it for long enough, you just learn how to read people and Pitino, he seems like a pretty good dude.

How often do you talk? I don’t know – he texts me, he spoke to me today, we spoke before I came out here, we talk a lot.

Who is going after you the hardest? All of the schools that are recruiting me are coming after me pretty hard – I see a lot of them at the games.

I read that you once said Syracuse was your dream school. Do you still feel that way?  I think every kid that plays basketball would be lying to you if they told you they didn’t have a dream school growing up, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the best situation for you. So yeah, when I was young, I liked watching Syracuse play. But I like all the other schools too.

Do you have any officials set up right now? No, not yet, I’m going to wait until after the live period to figure all that out.

Do you havea timeline for cutting down your list? Not until after I take all my visits.

But you don’t want to narrow to five before you do your visits? I won’t know that until I go home and see my family.

What are some of the things you're trying to show coaches on national AAU scene right now? Just consistency.

OK, Kaleb, I can see that your teammates are giving you heck right now, so I'll let you go. Thanks!
 

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