MaCio Teague, 6-4, 195, G, Sr. (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Transferred: April 30, 2018
Baylor assistant coach Jerome Tang remembers it well. So does Teague.
Along with a Nebraska staffer, Tang was in Cincinnati to watch Teague in a workout at his high school, Walnut Hills. Tang would give a PowerPoint presentation to Teague before continuing to keep an eye on him throughout the summer as he hooped with his All-Ohio Red AAU team.
“I didn’t play great,” Teague admitted. “And they never called me again.”
No one did. Except for UNC Asheville.
Well, that’s not entirely true. Teague had a couple of other D-1 offers, but both schools withdrew after the summer. He went on a visit to Asheville and had no intention of going to the Big South school. He called his parents on the trip and told them he had no desire to commit, especially since they had Dylan Smith and Dwayne Sutton at the time.
“Both had just finished their freshman year, so there were no minutes for me,” Teague recalled.
His parents’ reaction?
“Where are you going to go? What are you waiting on? You don’t have any other options.”
So Teague committed. Then Smith transferred to Arizona and Sutton to Louisville. Teague wound up starting 32 games as a freshman, averaging 15.4 points per contest. He increased it to 16.7 points his sophomore campaign, and shot 44 percent from long distance overall in his UNCA career.
But he decided to transfer after two seasons in the Big South once coach Nick McDevitt left for Middle Tennessee State. While every school passed on Teague out of high school, just about everyone wanted him now.
Teague was bitter, though; these programs didn’t want any part of him a few years back, but now the same staffs were in heavy pursuit. However, one assistant coach made the process simple for him to comprehend.
“Tell me which schools wanted you back then,” the coach reminded Teague. “None of them. If you don’t want to go to any of them, you can stay at Asheville or go with your old coach to Middle Tennessee State. But none of them wanted you out of high school [and that’s just the way it is].”
As he went through his options, Teague decided to pass on Louisville because of the uncertainty with NCAA sanctions. Xavier, his hometown school, was in the mix, but his connection with Bears assistant John Jakus was why he chose Baylor.
“I love the way he approaches me,” Teague said. “It resonates well with my spirit.”
Jakus also had a connection with Teague. At one time, Jakus was a JV coach in Ohio and his assistant, Jay Younkin, wound up at Walnut Hills coaching Teague. When MaCio decided to leave Asheville, Younkin immediately contacted Jakus.
“You’ve got to give this kid a shot,” Younkin said. “He’s the highest-character kid we’ve ever had, a relentless worker and has really improved since high school.”
So Jakus stepped out of the stands at the Dallas Mavericks game he was attending and reached out to Teague. “We hit it off,” Jakus said. “We’re built from the same cloth.”
Teague sat out the 2018-19 season after transferring, and wasted no time before making an impact last season. He started all 28 games, averaging 13.9 points. This year, his scoring has increased to 14.7 points per contest.
“I’m really glad I came here,” Teague said. “We’re in the national spotlight every single night and have a chance to compete for the national championship.”