D.J. Jeffries used to having top coaches like Calipari watching him play

D.J. Jeffries with UK coach John Calipari and assistant Tony Barbee.

By LARRY VAUGHT

What does John Calipari like best about 6-7 forward D.J. Jeffries?

“He tells me he likes my demeanor, my body language, the way I play hard and fight all the time,” said Jeffries.

He put all that on display at the Marshall County Hoop Fest Saturday when he scored 35 points and had 11 rebounds to lead Olive Branch (Miss.) to a 91-74 win over Adair County. He had 25 of his points in the second half after Olive Branch led only 44-41 at halftime.

Jeffries is a top 15 player in the 2019 recruiting class. He got a visit from the Kentucky coach about a week before he came to play in Hoopfest and then Calipari and assistant coach Kenny Payne came to Marshall County to see him play only a few hours after UK beat Harvard in Rupp Arena.

Olive Branch coach Eric Rombaugh said Calipari being at the game did not bother his star player.

“He is used to it and is good at zoning things out. He doesn’t believe the hype or anything like that. He just plays ball,” Rombaugh said. “I think he enjoys the recruiting but he is such a shy kid. He really doesn’t talk about it much.

“He enjoys the process but he doesn’t let it get to him. He is such an extraordinary kid that sometimes he compensates by trying to do more than what he is. He just doesn’t let the hype get to him. He is going to enjoy the process as it continues.”

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