Recruiting Notebook: Big games for DJ Wilson, Jalen Brunson; Luke Kennard picks Duke

Dylan Burkhardt

3Kdvp.St.4[1]Michigan commitment DJ Wilson’s high school career has come to an end, but he finished with one of his best games.

The 6-foot-8 combo forward was an instrumental piece of a terrific season for Capital Christian. Capital Christian lost in the Open Division championship to Bishop O’Dowd, a team that features the No. 1 junior in the country, Ivan Rabb. Despite facing high-profile competition, Wilson had a great game.

It was the end for D.J. Wilson, Capital Christian’s finest player and, like so many of his teammates, a young man of class and character. He insisted he would have a better showing than his first showing against O’Dowd and backed it up. The 6-foot-8 forward headed to Michigan had 29 points, 10 rebounds and four blocked shots in displaying his versatile game – running the floor, hitting jumpers, dunking and defending.

Wilson’s talented counterpart was 6-10 Ivan Rabb, the nation’s top junior recruit. Rabb had 26 points, 13 rebounds and six blocked shots, and his three alley-oop finishes keyed a run that doomed Capital Christian down the stretch. In the first meeting, Wilson had eight points. O’Dowd shot 50 percent and outrebounded Capital 40-28.

O’Dowd has won five of the last 10 NorCal titles, and O’Dowd coach Lou Richie was impressed with Wilson. (Photo: SacBee)

(Wilson) definitely showed what his potential is. Our game plan was to let him beat us with perimeter shooting. Well, he showed he could do that. And about everything else. He was amazing.”

Wilson averaged 14 points per game on the season and Capital Christian finished the year 28-4. Here are a couple of highlights of Wilson in action from the game.

Brunson scores 56 in state semifinal

Class of 2015 Michigan offer Jalen Brunson had a monster showing in the Illinois Class 4A state semifinal against Whitney Young and Duke commitment Jahlil Okafor. Brunson’s 56 point outing was a state finals tournament record and despite scoring 56 of his team’s 68 points, Brunson didn’t turn the ball over once.

Illinois head coach John Groce was in attendance along with his athletic director, Mike Thomas. The Illini were once considered to be out of the running for Brunson, but have since jumped back into the mix. Michigan, Michigan State, Temple and Villanova are some of the other schools involved, but Brunson should have a big summer on the AAU circuit.

Much was made over a photograph that circulated the internet which appeared to show Brunson giving the finger to the crowd and he was almost suspended for the third-place game. The linked article above does a good job of explaining the situation and has photos to prove that the incident was not intentional.

Luke Kennard picks Duke

Michigan was one of the first schools to start recruiting class of 2015 standout Luke Kennard, but the 6-foot-5 junior verbally committed to Duke on Monday evening.

Kennard rose to five-star status last summer and earned offers from just about everyone in college basketball including Kentucky, Duke, North Carolina among many others. Michigan had offered Kennard on June 15th, 2013.

Kennard averaged 41.2 points and 10.4 rebounds per game last season, winning Mr. Basketball in the state of Ohio.

The Wolverines currently have outstanding class of 2015 offers to Jalen Coleman and Jalen Brunson. Michigan is evaluating several other wing targets, but the most recent to visit Michigan is Kyle Ahrens. Ahrens is Kennard’s AAU teammate and a four-star prospect.

  • Josh

    Do not rule out Temple for Brunson. I go to every Temple home game (I live in Philly). Brunson’s dad, Rick, is a famed Temple bball grad and there are calls to bring him on staff as an assistant. Temple is also the only school currently to have offered Brunson and his running mate Conor Cashaw. Brunson and Cashaw have said they would like to go to the same school. The summer awaits, and Temple surely will have to compete with bigger fish but the sense here is that Temple could snag the pair.

  • section13row15

    It will be tough to get Brunson since we already have Spike and Derrick as true PG’s when he comes to school. I’m sure he will want immediate playing time. But where else can you get better coaching / training to get ready for the NBA at the guard position than Michigan right now?

    • UMHoopsFan

      I wouldn’t worry about this too much. Just about every team has recruited a PG in the last couple of years — e.g., MSU with Nairn in ’14 and Ill with Tate in ’13 — and with our track record and Walton’s performance this year, it wouldn’t be shocking if Derrick leaves early at some point. UM could and has run some 2 PG sets, and there could be a lot of backcourt minutes available by ’15. JB & co. will make sure Brunson sees the court early and often if he comes to Ann Arbor.

    • bballkdp

      I get the peoples understanding by them saying this but if you’re a player you are not afraid of competition especially when you’re a “top notch” player. Plus by the time Brunson steps foot on a college campus Spike is a senior and Derrick is a junior. Beilein has shown he isn’t afraid to play 2 PG’s at once or even playing a freshman point. Jalen is also taller then both those guys as a legit 6’2.

      • guestavo

        Brunson is not 6’2”

  • guestavo

    Fullcourt press on Jalen Coleman please

    • David Remmler

      Yes, I like JC more than any other target in this class.

  • mikey_mac

    Brunson sure looks like an offensive force, and very ball dominant.
    Wilson got abused on those late-game alley-oops referenced in the summary. He looks rather low intensity on the court.

  • chazer

    The culture continues….It was the end for D.J. Wilson, Capital Christian’s finest player and, like so many of his teammates, a young man of class and character.

  • bballkdp

    Figured kennard would go to duke…just looks like a dukie

  • jakelam2116

    Brunson. Wow. Enough said.

  • Wayman Britt

    Looking forward to Sanderson transforming DJ Wilson’s body like he did Morgan’s and LeVerts.

    I don’t care what position Brunson plays, you go strong to get an offensive dynamo like Brunson to sign at UM.

  • robpollard

    Holy smokes — Ivan Rabb could play and start in college right now. I am happy we have Wilson, but Rabb has an immediate size & skill level which could go to the NBA after next year (i.e., he doesn’t need college). Instead, I am sure he will go with Calipari or Self and be one & done (unless the rule changes).