This past weekend, Liberty and head coach Ritchie McKay hosted a consensus 4-star rated prospect George Washington, III for an official visit. Washington is a 6’2″, 170 pound guard from Louisville, Kentucky where he attends Christian Academy of Louisville. He is rated as a 4-star prospect by ESPN, 247Sports, and Rivals where he is a consensus ranked top 65 national prospect in the class of 2023. ESPN ranks him the highest as No. 24 in the class.
His offer list includes Louisville, Ohio State, Arkansas, Cincinnati, Western Kentucky, Tennessee, and Auburn. Washington has already taken visits to Tennessee, Cincinnati, Louisville, and Ohio State. An Austin, Tex. transplant, Washington and his family moved to Louisville prior to his sophomore year. In his first season with Christian Academy, as a sophomore, he established himself as a prolific scorer, pouring in 23.9 points per game, while shooting 49.0% from the field and 38.7% on three point attempts.
Following his visit, ASOR was able to talk to Washington for an exclusive interview. Hear what he had to say about his visit and where Liberty ranks among his top suitors.
YOU JUST CONCLUDED YOUR OFFICIAL VISIT AT LIBERTY, WHAT ARE YOUR MAIN TAKEAWAYS?
George Washington III: It was amazing. I hadn’t been on an unofficial there yet, so it was my first time seeing the campus as a whole. I got to see everything for the first time. It was great. The campus is absolutely beautiful out there in the mountains. I love how everything is situated and it’s huge. It’s a lot bigger than I anticipated it to be, and everything there looks like it was made yesterday.
WHAT WERE SOME OF THE HIGHLIGHTS OF YOUR TRIP?
GWIII: It started off on a great foot. I stepped in and was in Convocation in the morning on my first day. That was great, great seeing a campus and people so closely connected to God. Then, almost like right after that, getting to go see their practice, the style and intensity and focus to detail that Coach McKay has with his team, but also, at the same time, they are so focused and they are having fun with it. None of the guys were dreading anything. They are all having fun in practice and still staying on task and focused and learning and growing. Also, just hanging with the guys, getting to be with them, know them better, getting to see the campus again with them, all of that was great.”
HOW DOES LIBERTY COMPARE WITH SOME OF THE OTHER PLACES YOU HAVE ALREADY VISITED?
GWIII: It’s right up there. I can’t name too many facilities nicer. You would never be able to tell their conference. Some of the people who don’t know basketball and their view on Liberty, you wouldn’t be able to tell that was the school they are thinking of by being there. They carry themselves, they look like a major DI school, and the play like it and show it on the court too.
HOW MUCH DOES YOUR FAITH PLAY INTO WHY YOU ARE INTERESTED IN LIBERTY?
GWIII: The two areas I think are most important to me going to college are growth as a player and growth as a person. My faith in God is a major part of that. On top of that, I feel like Liberty is a good fit. All the colleges I’m looking at and considering, fit is another major part. There’s a lot of guys that make decisions based on names or uniforms or whatever, and they end up wasting a year and having to transfer because there was another guy at their same position or they just couldn’t work in that system or that offense. Fit is a major, major deal too.
TAKE US THROUGH THE TIMELINE OF LIBERTY RECRUITING YOU SINCE IT BEGAN.
GWIII: It’s definitely been coach Joe Pierre. I can’t remember who reached out first – either my coach reached out to him or they reached out to my coach – but they have been talking since pretty early in my sophomore year. Then, through my coach, I got on the phone with them a few times. They’ve probably been the school that I’ve been talking to the longest.
WHO WOULD YOU SAY IS RECRUITING YOU THE HARDEST RIGHT NOW, IN ADDITION TO LIBERTY?
GWIII: I’d definitely say Ohio State, Virginia, Arkansas, Louisville, Cincinnati, Xavier, Auburn – they reach out to me too.
DO YOU HAVE A TIMELINE FOR WHEN YOU WOULD LIKE TO WRAP UP YOUR RECRUITING PROCESS?
GWIII: Me and my parents have talked about this. We’re trying to stay away from a rigid timeline so we don’t rush the decision, but at the same time I don’t want this to be something that I hold off to the end of my senior year. I think if the Lord brings an answer to me mid-season, I will make the decision mid-season. If it’s this time next year or earlier next year, then we will make the decision. I think just making sure that it is a solid and right one, when that time comes, we are going to make it. When we know what it is, we will make it, we won’t hold off.
KYLE RODE AND COLIN PORTER ARE KENTUCKY GUYS ALSO, HAVE THEY TALKED TO YOU ABOUT TRYING TO KEEP THAT KENTUCKY TO LYNCHBURG PIPELINE GOING?
GWIII: Kyle Rode actually reached out to me last year. Hanging out with him on campus was great. He’s a great guy, really great guy. We just sat there and the crazy thing is there wasn’t too much, in talking with the players, about getting me to come over there. It was just, when I was with the players, hanging out with them and getting to know them and the school. We were more focused on building an actual relationship. I love that and that was great. Colin Porter reached out to me after he committed. We talked a bit too. I love them. They’re great guys.