LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- ESPN 100 power forward Bobby Portis (Little Rock, Ark./Hall) is hopeful he can continue to call ESPN 100 center Moses Kingsley (New Albany, Miss./Huntington Prep) his teammate after Arkansas Wings Elite dispatched Team NLP 54-29 in the AAU Nationals final on Monday.
Portis, an Arkansas commit, said he has been lobbying for Kingsley to join him in the Razorbacks' class whenever the two are together.
“I think we have a lot of good chemistry on the court, especially on the defensive end,” said Portis, who finished the game with 18 points and 10 rebounds. “We’re good friends off the court, too, and he’s just a great teammate.”
Even though the 6-foot-9, 225-pound Portis wasn’t born when the Razorbacks won their sole national championship in 1994, he said believes he and Kingsley could take Arkansas back to a spot of power in the SEC.
“Everything takes time, but having Moses in the fold would definitely bring us closer to that goal,” Portis said. “That’s the reason I committed to Arkansas. I want to see the program get to that level where they are among the elite programs in the nation.”
For his part, Kingsley is taking things slowly. Two months ago he transferred from New Albany (Miss.) to Huntington Prep and he wants to talk with the administration at the school before making any moves with his recruitment.
The 6-9, 210-pound prospect who came to the United States from Nigeria in 2010 said that Louisville, Florida, Arkansas and N.C. State are the programs he’s looking at. He is unsure of when he’ll make his official visits but he knows that his Wings Elite teammate will be in his ear when he visits Arkansas.
“Oh, yes, Bobby talks to me about Arkansas all the time,” Kingsley said. “We’re always rooming together during these tournaments, so I hear a lot about Arkansas.
“I enjoy playing with Bobby. I think we complement each other well and they are one of the programs I’m very interested in. He’s a big part of the reason I’m interested in them.”
Wings Elite was never seriously challenged in the final, and both Portis and Kingsley admitted they lean on each other to stay focused during times when the game reaches a blowout stage.
“It’s been a very long couple of months,” Kingsley said. “And we’ve played a lot of basketball so we have to challenge each other sometimes. Maybe we challenge each other to make more plays on the defensive end or whatever it takes to stay focused.”
Kingsley said the key to his successful recruitment will be for him to work hard and let things happen.
“I want to just continue to improve my game and be a more consistent player on the floor,” Kingsley said. “The programs that are interested in me are great places with great coaches, so I just have to continue to show them why I can be a strong part of the team.”