Jalen Lecque discusses playing in the Triangle, in front of NC State coach Kevin Keatts
It didn’t take four-star guard Jalen Lecque long to realize his future was in Raleigh.
Lecque (6-4, 190), the No. 4 combo guard in the nation, according to 247Sports, and the No. 1 player in New Hampshire, announced on Tuesday that he will be attending N.C. State next season.
Lecque is the first player in the class of 2019 to commit to Kevin Keatts. The announcement means Lecque will be making a return to the state of North Carolina.
“It’s like my third home,” Lecque said about the Tar Heel State. “All of my family that’s not in New York City or New Jersey is down there.”
The super athletic guard, a native New Yorker, played his junior year at Christ School in Arden before transferring to Brewster Academy in Wolfeboro, N.H.
Lecque and the Greenies played in the John Wall Holiday Invitational in Raleigh last December. During his one season in Arden, Lecque led Christ School to a 23-13 overall record and an 8-1 finish in league play, and a second-round NCISAA playoff appearance.
Lecque picked the Wolfpack over UCLA, Louisville, TCU, Oregon, Texas Tech and Tennessee.
It didn’t take long, however, for Lecque to make his decision. He narrowed down his list to seven schools in August and had only taken two official visits: To N.C. State on Sept. 7, and to Tennessee the following weekend.
“It all started when I was at the John Wall (Holiday Invitational) last year,” Lecque said. “It just felt like a real family oriented place in Raleigh. I went to N.C. State for a visit and just fell in love with it. They were real cool people, they acted like family and I love the coaching staff for how hard they recruited me.”
He said he didn’t want to take any other visits after the trip to Knoxville because he wanted to focus on basketball. Lecque said he feels like his “game is making a huge turn right now” with his jump shot and court awareness and he felt like he would be distracted if he took anymore visits.
At the Nike EYBL Peach Jam in North Augusta, S.C., in July, Keatts and members of his staff were on hand to get one final look at Lecque.
During the Peach Jam Lecque averaged 15 points per game (44.4 percent FG), 5.4 rebounds and 3.4 assists. Lecque is the highest ranked player to commit to N.C. State since 2016 when the Wolfpack landed Fayetteville guard Dennis Smith Jr., who was ranked No. 7 nationally according to 247Sports.
Lecque has a similar build to Smith and displays the same athleticism as the Dallas Mavericks second-year player.
In Keatts’ free flowing offense, Lecque said the second year coach loves the way he gets up and down the court and plays “his style.”
“He said they will give me the ball when they need too,” Lecque said. “And put me in the perfect position to score.”