247Sports national analyst Jerry Meyer changed his prediction for UK basketball target Mark Smith from Michigan State to Illinois on Thursday, just before Smith is set to visit his home-state school.
The 6-foot-5 combo guard from Edwardsville, Ill., was being recruited by the Illini under the previous coaching staff, and new head coach Brad Underwood placed a call to Smith — the state’s Mr. Basketball for 2017 — on his first day on the job.
Smith has also received scholarship offers from UK and Michigan State in recent weeks, but Illinois is fighting hard to keep him in the state.
He told the Herald-Leader after last week’s Derby Festival Classic in Louisville that Illinois sees him as a point guard — his preferable position — at the next level. UK and Michigan State are recruiting him to play on and off the ball.
Smith is expected to visit Ohio State this weekend, too, and he has said that he will visit UK before making a college decision, though a date for that trip has not yet been set. Duke’s coaches also visited with Smith earlier this week.