Meet Nahziah Carter, Jay Z's Nephew and Rising 4-Star Hoops Recruit

David GardnerStaff WriterJune 1, 2017

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For much of his high school hoops career, Nahziah Carter has followed the blueprint. He has attended a prestigious high school (Bishop Kearney in Rochester, New York), has played for a top AAU team (The City Rocks of the EYBL) and had committed to play Division I college basketball at Dayton. But when coach Archie Miller left the Flyers for Indiana, Carter reopened his commitment and has since elevated his play to attract interest from schools like IU and Georgetown.

Although he's still waiting on the holy grail of high-major offers, he has been gaining increased attention on the summer basketball circuit. Last weekend, the 6'6" Carter dunked on Manute Bol's 7'1" son, 5-star recruit Bol Bol. 

He followed that up by posterizing 2018 No. 1 recruit Marvin Bagley. 

But the moment that brought him the most attention came after the game, when he posed with a relative few people knew he had: Jay Z. Carter's father, Eli, is Jay Z's older brother. 

This week, the younger Carter talked with Bleacher Report about being Jay Z's nephew and his unfinished business on the basketball court.

      

Bleacher Report: I've read that you have an A average. The semester is almost over—is that still the case?

Nahziah Carter: Yeah, I'm still up there. I don't know my GPA right now, but I have like a 91 or a 92 average in most of my classes.

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B/R: After committing to Dayton last year, you reopened your commitment when Archie Miller left to take over at Indiana. Where is your recruitment now? Are you considering reclassifying from 2017 to 2018?

NC: I'm thinking about reclassifying still. I want to graduate because I feel like I have some good scholarships in this class, but I also feel like I could get stronger with strength and conditioning for another year in prep school. I haven't made up my mind yet.

      

B/R: You recently took visits to Georgetown and Boston College. What impressions did you come away with from each?

NC: Both schools were really nice. They had nice campuses. I really liked Georgetown. It's small but not too small. It's in a good area. They play against some good schools, and the facilities are nice. Plus, [Georgetown coach] Patrick Ewing is a Hall of Famer. And beyond just being a Hall of Famer, he's a really nice guy. He's funny and humorous, and I liked being around him.

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B/R: With Archie Miller at Indiana and the Hoosiers having an open scholarship, are you on their radar as well?

NC: Yeah, [Miller] and I talk here and there. Once they had a scholarship open, they reached out to me with a little more interest, I think.

      

B/R: What other schools are at the top of your list right now?

NC: I really like Georgetown. I like Washington too because I know Coach [Mike] Hopkins when he was [an assistant] at Syracuse. Indiana, of course, because of Coach Miller. And South Carolina has expressed some interest too. I'm just focused on making sure I make the right decision, even if that means not going to college this year.

      

B/R: It's in the news now that your dad is Jay Z's brother. Do you feel like more people are recognizing you as Jay Z's nephew these days? Is there pressure from that?

NC: I've never really felt that much pressure about it, but people never really used to know. Now I guess it's kind of getting out there. I know that more people are going to be watching me and evaluating me and that there are going to be a lot more opinions, but I'm not worried about it.

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B/R: How many times has he seen you play basketball?

NC: He came out to L.A. a couple days ago, and that was actually the first time he'd seen me play. I'm over here on the East Coast and he lives more out there on the West Coast, so he didn't really have a chance until now. But I told him he should come out because I was playing in his area, and he showed up. I was happy to have him there.

     

B/R: What was that like for you? How about for your teammates?

NC: I was going to play my game regardless of whether he came. It's not like I was nervous that he showed up or anything. I wanted him there. And my teammates—they ask about him less now maybe. They used to ask if he was my real uncle and how he was my uncle and all that stuff. When he shows up to the game, that kind of answers those questions.

      

B/R: They don't make any jokes about it? Nothing about wanting to meet Beyonce?

NC: They've been pretty cool about it, to be honest. They never ask for autographs or to meet anybody or anything like that.

       

B/R: In songs and interviews, Jay Z has claimed that he shot your dad when he was 12. Have you heard that story in your family?

NC: My father tells me some great stories from when they were growing up, and so does my grandma, but they don't really talk about that one too much. My dad did something and they fought, but we don't talk about it. My brothers and my sisters all know. Honestly, we usually laugh about it. I don't know why, but we find it kind of funny. I mean, Jay Z shot our dad. That's pretty crazy.

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B/R: Do you have a favorite Jay Z album? Who are your favorite rappers right now?

NC: I really like Reasonable Doubt, his first one. Favorite rappers right now? I like Drake. J. Cole. Travis Scott.

      

B/R: Do you make any music?

NC: Ironically, I do love to rap. I've never recorded a song or anything like that. I'm not looking to make a career out of rapping, but my teammates and I like to rap. We just freestyle, rap about whatever comes to mind. We're known for rapping all over the place—before and after games, on the bus, at practice, in the subway, anywhere.

     

B/R: Do you feel like now that people know you as Jay Z's nephew that it'll be harder to step out of that shadow?

NC: I guess you could say making a name for myself—distancing myself from his success and having success of my own—that will be the hardest part going forward. But I think I'll be fine. I have confidence in my game. I'll dial it up just like Uncle Jay did.