Alabama basketball commit Langston Wilson Q&A
Four-star forward Langston Wilson is the latest addition the Alabama basketball’s 2021 recruiting class. The 6-foot-9-inch junior college standout talked about his decision, his role models and what could be a special year on the recruiting trail.
Q: What was the pitch from Nate Oats and the Alabama staff?
A: They wanted me to come in and, more or less, fill in that spot of Herb Jones. That was kind of the biggest thing, hearing that and then their play style. With me not being a traditional four man and the way that they play – they get up and down in transition and they get up a lot of shots and space the floor out really well and they get the ball up in the open court – so that is an area that I tend to like.
Q: How much work happens behind the scenes to get to where you are now?
A: A ton. Even during the pandemic I was doing a lot of things: getting in the gym, doing body work, waking up at 5:30 in the morning to get in the gym to go lift and work on different agility things and different strength things.
A lot of people just look at it as, ‘he just happens to be one of the kids and it was given to him,’ when you know that is not the case at all or the situation at all. Behind the scenes a lot of people do not know that I was, two weeks ago, 185 pounds and my last weigh-in was at 192, so it has been a lot of work and things like that I have been putting in, just trying to improve my game.
I try being a great teammate, both on and off the court – on the court and on the sideline – and then just trying to improve on a bunch of little things, things that will help me take my game to the next level with ball handling and decision making and shot selection and things like that. All those are things that people do not see. People just see the high-flying dunks and things like that, but behind the scenes there is a lot more being done; you do not just go into the gym and dunk all day.
Q: How good can this recruiting class be?
A: I feel as though we have the potential to be the No. 1 recruiting class in the country. I feel as though even with the pieces that we have already – we are already – set to be a team that a lot of people will not want to play. If we can get commitments from players like Charles (Bediako) and from Caleb (Houstan) – those two guys, Charles being someone at the center position who can move, he is very mobile and very athletic, he blocks shots and can space out and knock down a trail three and then you have Caleb who is just a straight sniper, in a sense, with his shot-making ability – so with all that I feel as though we really have the potential to be the No. 1 class in America. It could be highly possible. It could be a situation where we could end up with the No. 1 recruiting class in basketball and football, so that’s exciting.
Q: Who are some of the guys you have modeled your game after?
A: Growing up, probably my idol for basketball, I would have to say would be my dad. He played at Villanova, he played overseas, not really the most recognizable name, but someone I saw that was from his family and his situation that went out and did it. One of the first people in his family, his immediate family, to get a degree and things like that. So that was my big role model basketball-wise. Kind of a small-town kid, country boy, going in and going to Villanova and being there for four years and having an impact.
Guys that I like to model my game after, I like to mix my game between Derrick Jones Jr. and Brandon Ingram – Brandon Ingram being someone at my size with a freakish skillset, being able to handle the ball and being an elite scorer from the mid-range and being a knock down shooter from 3 (point range), also being someone that you can run your offense through and who is someone that is going to score a lot of points; and I like Derrick Jones Jr. because he is someone I can compare my athleticism to and then also, the way he is defensively, someone who can switch one through five legitimately and is a lockdown defender and a great transition scorer and finisher.
Q: What is your favorite thing to do off the basketball court?
A: We have a lake behind my school, I really like to go every day. I probably go out there for 2 hours. I just like to go out by the lake and chill, and sometimes I just walk around the lake and enjoy the scenery. There is a ton of fish and things like that in the lake. I just kind of sit there, it is kind of like my inner peace almost, if that makes sense. It is just a little area where I can go and sit down and chill and just be cool.