Tyus Jones

Tyus Jones: Success At The Summit

  • Author:
    Tyus Jones
  • Date:
    Apr 6, 2015

NOTE: The following player diary from current Duke University freshman Tyus Jones first appeared on USAB.com last year when Jones -- along with current Duke teammates Jahlil Okafor and Justise Winslow -- were in Portland, Oregon, for the 2015 Nike Hoop Summit. As Jones, Okafor and Winslow prepare to play in Monday night's NCAA title game, the newest members of the USA Basketball Junior National Select Team are preparing to play this Saturday, April 11, in the 2015 Nike Hoop Summit.


Well, we did it! Throughout our practices and planning for the Nike Hoop Summit, we had one goal in mind: get the U.S. team a victory. The World Team had won the last two Nike Hoop Summits, and we were determined to start a new win streak of our own.

It was a really good game, definitely a hard-fought battle. Both our team and the World Team played extremely well. The World Team jumped out to an early lead. We were feeling the game out and made some mistakes early, so we just had to settle in. Eventually in the second quarter, we went on a run, and picked up the tempo with a full-court press. That forced some turnovers. We got some transition buckets, and that kind of helped us gain momentum for the rest of the game. It went back and forth a bit in the second half, but we were able to take the lead and sustain it and then close the game out in the fourth quarter.

After the game, coach (Mike) Jones thanked us for all of our hard work during the week. We had two-a-day practices from Wednesday through Friday. With the short time before the game, we really had to be locked in and focused, so he thanked us for that. He said we did a great job of executing the game plan and getting the USA back on the winning side. That was our main focus, so we were both happy and proud to have succeeded.


Along with a great crowd of fans at the Moda Center for the game, there were also a lot of NBA scouts in attendance. The scouts were at our practice and scrimmage on Thursday, too. I was trying not to pay any attention to them or let it affect my game. But every player knows there are scouts there, and you want to play well. For the most part, we were able to block them out and focus on the practices, doing our jobs and just working hard. I think I played well this week. I know the scouts were watching, but that really wasn’t my focus at all.

As for the fans, it was a good crowd at the game – it was nice to see people coming out and supporting USA Basketball and the World Team, and just the Nike Hoop Summit in general. Many of the fans came up to us and asked for autographs in the tunnel after the game. Of course, we were happy to oblige. So it was really fun, a really great environment.

After the game, we hung out at the hotel a little while and then took off for the airport. Everyone kind of started to say their goodbyes, thinking we wouldn’t see each other for a while, then we realized we’d see each other again in about 48 hours. Just about everyone from the U.S. team at the Hoop Summit will be in New York this week for the Jordan Brand Classic.

I took a redeye flight back to Minnesota after the game, but I’m leaving Tuesday morning for New York. I was back at school Monday – I had to make it back and talk to my teachers, get some of the work that I missed (even though I’ll be missing more this week). The teachers are great in terms of working with me and being flexible. I have to thank them for that.

It’s been a pretty busy stretch, but I wouldn’t want it any other way. It’s all fun, and a great honor to be at these different places I’ve been able to travel to. It’s special to myself and to my family. I’m having fun with it.

After the Jordan Brand Classic, I’ll be home for the rest of the school year – and looking forward to graduation.

After this week, though, it definitely will be much longer before the members of the USATeam will be together again. I’ll be with Jahlil Okafor and Justise Winslow when we get to Duke in the fall. Some other guys who are going to the same school will be together at their colleges. But as a group, I don’t know the next time we’ll all be together at the same time.

Thankfully, we have some amazing memories. It was just a really great time last week, and I thank USA Basketball for the opportunity to represent them. We made a lot of memories at the practices and back at the hotel and in the game, obviously this is just something that I don’t think any of us on the team will ever forget.

Related Videos

Behind 19 points from Michael Porter Jr. and Jarred Vanderbilt, the USA defeated the World Select Team 98-87 to earn the "W" in the 2017 Nike Hoop Summit. Check out some of the USA highlights from the game.

Practices are over and the USA and World Select teams are ready to play for the 2017 Nike Hoop Summit title. Hear what USA coach Miles Simon thinks of his USA Team's chances.

  • Date:
    Apr 7, 2017

Utilizing his 7-foot-9 wingspan, USA 7-foot center Mohamed Bamba hopes to help the USA to a win in the 20th annual Nike Hoop Summit.

Representing Jamaica, World Team center and University of Kentucky recruit Nick Richards is enjoying his Nike Hoop Summit experience.

Two-time USA gold medalist Wendell Carter Jr. is back at it with USA Basketball and is enjoying being back with teammates for the 20th annual Nike Hoop Summit.

Related Content

USA Basketball committees, which will select coaches and athletes for various USA Basketball teams for the 2017-2020 quadrennium, are now in place.

Leading by only four points with 2:43 left in the game, the USA went on to win the 2017 Nike Hoop Summit by an 11-point margin, 98-87, on April 7 at the Moda Center in Portland, Oregon.

Behind 19 points from Michael Porter Jr. and Jarred Vanderbilt, the USA defeated the World Select Team 98-87 to earn the "W" in the 2017 Nike Hoop Summit. Check out some of the USA highlights from the game.

The USA held off several late rallies by the World Select Team to record a 98-87 victory in the 2017 Nike Hoop Summit. With the win, the USA improved its all-time series record in the annual event to 14-6.

With 2:43 remaining in the 20th annual Nike Hoop Summit, the USA led by just four points.

USA Basketball

Coach Licensing & Organization Accreditation Login



Forgot Password?