Written by Brad Townsend
Prestonwood basketball standout Julius Randle added to McDonald's All-American game roster, will announce college decision March 20
Prestonwood Christian forward Julius Randle, the nation’s No. 2-ranked recruit, has been added to the East roster for the April 3 McDonald’s All-American game in Chicago.
Randle was sidelined by a fractured foot during most of the high school season, but he returned for the final five games, last weekend helping Prestonwood earn its second straight TAPPS 5A state title.
“Was just told I was added to the McDonald AA game,” Randle tweeted Wednesday morning. “So blessed man.”
Reached by The News, Randle’s mother, Carolyn Kyles, confirmed Julius’ addition to the McDonald’s game.
A few days before the McDonald’s rosters were announced in mid-February, Kyles and Randle spoke to McDonald’s committee chairman Morgan Wootten and director Douglas Freeland about the possibility of Julius being added at a later date.
Kyles said Wootten told them they would be happy to add Randle, provided he returned to the court, performed well and showed that he was healthy.
In five games after returning from injury, Randle averaged 28.8 points and 15 rebounds, including 32.5 points and 15.5 rebounds in the state semifinal and final.
“It’s a blessing, something that he’s worked for all of his life,” Kyles said of Wednesday’s McDonald’s news.
“The injury was something we didn’t expect, but thank goodness to Mr. Wooten and Mr. Douglas. They knew how hard he’d worked over all these years. They gave him a chance to heal and come back and prove that he was still the same Julius.”
Randle becomes the 25th player on McDonald’s roster and third Dallas-area representative.
One of Randle’s teammates on the 13-member East squad will be Kimball guard Keith Frazier. DeSoto guard Matt Jones, who has committed to Duke, is on the McDonald’s West roster. Randle and Jones have been teammates on the AAU Texas Titans since they were fifth graders.
Frazier and Randle have yet to announce their college commitments. Kyles said her son has scheduled a March 20 announcement, nationally televised from Prestonwood Academy. Last week, he told The News that his finalists are Kentucky, Kansas, Texas, Oklahoma, Florida and North Carolina State.
According to McDonald’s All-American game officials, Randle becomes the third late addition in the event’s history, joining former Maverick Sam Perkins (1980) and Dereck Whittenburg (1979).
This year’s April 3 game at Chicago’s United Center will be shown on ESPN.
Follow Brad Townsend on Twitter at @Townbrad.