Meet class of 2022 prospect Derrian Ford, a highly-touted guard out of Magnolia High School in Arkansas. He brings a combination of size, strength, quickness, ball handling, and basketball IQ that allows him to be effective on both ends of the court. He’s a versatile scorer on offense, making him a tricky matchup for opponents. He’s also regarded for his court vision, as well as his ability to find teammates for easy scoring opportunities. If he’s not on the court, he’s likely in the weight room getting stronger — a primary reason he’s developed himself into one of the top players in his class.
Ford recently spent some time chatting with Pro Insight’s Jake Lieberman to break down his recruitment up to this point.
For the next installment of “Recruiting Roundup,” we present class of 2022 prospect Derrian Ford, from Magnolia, Arkansas:
Pro Insight: What's the current breakdown of the schools involved in your recruitment?
Derrian Ford: It’s a lot of great schools, like Arkansas, Auburn, Baylor, Georgia Tech, Texas Tech, Oklahoma State, Florida, Vanderbilt, Alabama, Ole Miss, LSU — a lot of great programs. I’ve been building a strong bond with each and every one of them.
PI: Which programs have you heard from the most lately?
DF: The schools that I just named, really — it’s just a lot.
PI: Had you completed any in-person visits pre-pandemic?
DF: I’ve been to Arkansas, Oklahoma State — I’ve been to Baylor for a camp — Vanderbilt, Alabama, Florida...I’ve been to a lot of schools for visits, that’s just some I can name off the top of my head.
PI: What kind of role do you see yourself filling at the next level?
DF: I see myself as being a leader, a scorer, and having a winning mentality. I bring defense to the team, and always put hard work and effort in. Being a student of the game, being able to listen to coaching, and adapt to being put in the system.
PI: What’s been the most unique recruiting pitch you've heard thus far?
DF: All of the coaches I have spoken to have told me that I will be a major impact for their program. They just want me to keep watching their games on TV, and learning their system.
PI: What's the funniest thing that's happened in a virtual visit on Zoom?
DF: When I was talking to Florida on a virtual visit we asked ‘are there any actual gators in Florida?’ and the coach was like ‘oh yeah, there are a lot of them.’ It was pretty funny.
PI: Did you have any dream schools growing up?
DF: Not really. I watched a lot of football. I used to watch LSU football a lot, my dad’s from Louisiana so you can call that a dream school for football, but I didn’t really have one for basketball.
PI: If you could team up with any high school player in the country when you guys get to college, who would you pick?
DF: It wouldn’t really matter. I would just want somebody who is gonna have the same effort as me. Somebody that can make me better, and I can make better.
PI: What are your three main priorities when narrowing down and eventually making a final decision with your recruitment?
DF: I look for God to help me, and see how the school is. When I talk to God, he will help me make this decision. Family as well, and then just how I would fit into the system.
PI: How's your timeline looking?
DF: I don’t really know yet, because I am still 17. For most prospects it’s getting ready to be about that time, but I’m just focusing on perfecting my craft, and focusing on this season. Later on down the line I can make that decision with my family.
PI: Let’s talk goals. What do you still want to accomplish while in high school?
DF: My goal is to win a state championship, and then individually,I just want to improve all aspects of my game, and show that I can play at the next level.
PI: If you could sum up your recruitment process up to this point in a sentence or so, what would it be?
DF: It’s amazing. I love talking to the coaches.