Top Simeon recruit chooses Duke

High school basketball phenom garners national attention

December 20, 2012

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(WBEZ/Natalie Moore)
Simeon Career Academy senior Jabari Parker dons a Duke University hat.

Standing in a gymnasium packed with his fellow students at Simeon Career Academy on Chicago's South Side, senior Jabari Parker slowly pulled out a jersey.

As the blue became visible, and it was clear that Parker had chosen to attend Duke University, the crowd let out a roar.

Parker received a full scholarship to play basketball.

ESPN ranks Parker the Number 2 high school senior in the country. Earlier this year the forward graced the cover of Sports Illustrated.

Parker said he chose Duke just a couple of hours before his national press conference on Thursday, flanked by his coach and family. He said Duke's historic and stellar basketball program attracted him.

"You can’t go wrong at the program and also most importantly, the long-term investment. I feel like if I go there I can get a good degree," Parker said.

Parker was deciding among Florida, Michigan State and Brigham Young.

Parker is also a Mormon. He said college was a priority right now rather than doing mission work like most young people of his faith do right out of high school.

Simeon is also the alma mater of Chicago Bulls star Derrick Rose.