When it comes to choosing a college, Jabari Parker has a lot of factors to take into consideration.
The Simeon standout has narrowed his options to Michigan State, Stanford, BYU, Duke and Florida, and as the process of committing to a school continues, Parker has a few main keys that will help him make his final decision:
"Relationship with the coach, relationship with the team and the style of play," Parker listed. "Also, how will the team be the following year as far as whether the coach is going to stay or not."
But first and foremost, Parker's main priority is to pick a school that will provide him the best education. Simeon coach Robert Smith has helped Parker and his family every step of the way, and he's even received some advice from Derrick Rose, who suggested he decides based on who can provide the best support on and off the court.
Chicago Elite Classic
As Whitney Young coach Tyrone Slaughter puts it, he and Smith will finally be "having their baby" on Saturday morning.
After just over eight months of planning, the two coaches from Chicago's powerhouse schools will be hosting the Chicago Elite Classic, a tournament that will welcome the nation's top high school basketball programs from California, Maryland, Utah, Ohio and Georgia.
Slaughter, Smith, Parker and Whitney Young junior standout Jahlil Okafor joined Chicago Tribune Live to discuss the upcoming event and what it will be like to face the nation's top talent in their hometown.
"It's a blessing for me," an injured, yet optimistic Parker said. "Growing up, you always see these games on TV, but now I get to see it up close. A lot of the nation's talent and my school playing against one of these teams in our hometown, so that will be very fun for me."
Although Parker won't be able to join his teammates on the court, Okafor is looking forward to representing Whitney Young and providing Chicago "bragging rights" if his team can take down the other competitors.
Of course when you bring together the country's best players, the caliber of talent naturally leads to a high level of competitiveness overall. With the tournament just two days away, the talking has already begun.
"It's a lot of trash talking," Parker said about the general atmosphere. "But I don't pay it any mind because there's only one way I play this game and it's because of the love, not any of the attention.
"We're just friends at the end of the day, the competition already knows what I'm capable of doing, so they don't do too much trash talking to me."