Take your pick

Published 12:00 am Sunday, July 28, 2002

If asked to write the traditional back-to-school “How I Spent My Summer Vacation” essay, Jai Miller could write a book. While most high schoolers would list vacations and summer jobs, the up-coming senior at Selma High could tell about playing basketball in front of legendary basketball coaches.

Miller is spending his summer vacation traveling to various sports camps, showcasing his skills for scouts and coaches from collegiate athletic programs. Talented at both basketball, football and baseball, he attended Auburn’s football camp earlier this month and plans to go to basketball camps and tournaments all over the country.

At the Tigers’ football camp, Miller said he “felt pretty good” about how he did. He thinks that the Auburn camp was the most enjoyable of what he has experienced so far.

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“The most fun was probably the Auburn football camp, but I’m really looking forward to the ABCD camp,” he commented.

The ABCD camp is an Adidas basketball camp held yearly in Teanick, N.J., that brings together top high school basketball players from around the country. Participants are divided into teams that scrimmage in front of university coaches.

Miller attended the ABCD camp last year, and even as a junior he made coaches take note.

“I had one game where I scored 29 points, and Coach K from Duke was watching,” he said modestly. “After that, I started getting a lot more mail from Duke.”

Miller played down the accomplishment, but not many high school basketball players can say that they’ve gotten the attention of Mike Krzyzewski, Duke’s head coach who has led his team to three national championships.

Coach K isn’t the only college representative to be impressed with Jai Miller’s athletic ability.

“It’s been a handful,” Miller said about coaches who have recruited him. “Last night, one coach called about eight times.”

Obviously, Miller has piqued the interest of several colleges. Part of this interest could be generated by his ability to play both basketball and football very well. He’s even considering playing both sports in college.

“Basketball is always first,” he said. “But I’m really leaning towards playing both in college.”

Surprisingly, Miller has had more football scholarship offers than basketball offers to date. This could aid in his decision to play two Division I sports.

But with the recruiting circus, where is Jai thinking about going? It’s still a little early to tell &045;&045; after all, his senior year hasn’t even started yet. But Miller has a few ideas.

“I’m looking at some places like Auburn and Alabama,” he said. “And at LSU, Georgia Tech and Stanford. Just lots of them.”

Stanford may have an advantage in attracting Miller — they have a player playing both football and basketball, which Miller said would make it easier for him to take on. But the ler said would make it easier for him to take on. But the decision, a tough one, isn’t made yet. There’s no telling where the talented superstar will go. a program that I can really build up,” he said. “Where I can get out on the floor and get some playing time and really make a difference.”

With stats like Miller has put up over the last two years, it is no wonder colleges are so high on recruiting him. Last year he averaged 18 points, seven rebounds, three steals and one block per game. He had 1,839 yards passing and 17 touchdowns in the last two years quarterbacking the Selme High Saints, and he also rushed for 484 yard. In 2002 he had a batting average of .463

for the Saints’ baseball team.

“I think he is the best pound-for-pound athlete in the state and maybe in the country,” said coach Davis, one of Millers basketball coaches at Selma High. “Not only is he a good basketball player, but he is an outstanding baseball and football player. As far as football goes, I think he would make an outstanding wide receiver or defensive back at the college level.”