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UW Basketball Recruiting Update: AAU Season is Here

The focus shifts to 2020 and 2021 as we wait for a McDaniels announcement

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Columbus Practice Kevin Jairajj-USA TODAY Sports

There are still a few loose ends to tie up with the Class of 2019. The Jaden McDaniels decision is of course looming and looks like it will continue to do so for a while*. But the focus outside of that can transition to the 2020 and 2021 recruiting classes with the return of the Nike, Adidas, and Under Armour AAU circuits which are all now underway. Almost every Pac-12 level prospect in the country is playing for an AAU team in one of those divisions and this past weekend was the first chance for many of them to make a mark on the national stage in front of college coaches and recruiting experts.

*There continues to be no update on McDaniels. Washington still seems to be the most likely destination but at this point we likely won’t hear anything until an announcement is actually made. He’s not going to be picking hats off tables.

New 2021 Offer

Jackson Grant, PF, 6’9, 205. Olympia High School, Olympia, Washington.

247Sports: NR; Rivals: 4 stars; ESPN: NR

Other Offers: Pepperdine

The Huskies gave out their first new offer in the class of 2021 in months this past weekend to standout Olympia star Jackson Grant. Grant is playing with WA Supreme in the UAA. They’re just 3-5 through their first 8 games but Grant is leading the team in production averaging 15 points and 6.6 rebounds per game while shooting 61% FG, 50% 3pt, 65% FT. The 3-point shooting was on just over 1 attempt per game so it’s not a major part of his game right now but definitely shows there might be potential to grow into the role of a stretch big.

As just a sophomore in high school there’s a very good chance that Grant grows another inch or two and ends up at closer to 7 feet. He certainly looks lanky watching his film but it’s hard to tell how much of that is because he’s so skinny versus having a long wingspan. He has just 2 blocks through 8 games on the UAA so Grant doesn’t profile as the kind of elite shot blocker that you’d prefer to have in the zone. But if he can stretch the floor a little bit on offense and serve as a tall 4 man on defense in the corner of the zone while giving occasional spot minutes at center if necessary then that appears to be the best fit. So far Pepperdine is his only other offer which came just last week so it’ll be a little while to figure out who gets involved and will ultimately serve as competition for Washington.

Roundup by Team

Here are some of the other priority players with 2020 and 2021 offers grouped by the team they’re playing with this spring/summer and how they’ve performed so far.

Seattle Rotary- Nike EYBL

Offered players: 2020 Kendall Munson, 2021 Paolo Banchero, 2021 Shane Nowell

The Huskies raided Seattle Rotary this year adding RaeQuan Battle and Marcus Tsohonis while still hoping to add Jaden McDaniels. That was a veteran Rotary squad led mostly by rising high school seniors. Now the core of the team are 2021 players with Rainier Beach’s Kendall Milton and John Hart as the two primary 2020 prospects (Milton is transferring to Beach after playing last year for Puyallup). Milton earned a UW offer with his play in the WA state tournament and has continued that strong effort through weekend one of the EYBL. He has put up averages of 9.8 points and 9.8 rebounds per game as an athletic post playing power forward. Munson has moved several times in the last 4 years and has recovered from an ACL tear but you can expect that if he keeps putting up a near double double that he’ll get some out of state Pac-12 offers very soon.

O’Dea’s Paolo Banchero has taken over for Jaden McDaniels as the clear star on Rotary which is to be expected for a top-10 overall talent in his class. He dominated the competition through session #1 with 19 points, 11 rebounds, and 1.5 blocks per game. Washington continues to have every advantage in Banchero’s recruitment as a local legacy but he’ll have the ability to go anywhere he wants for 1 year of college before moving onto the NBA. Shane Nowell is Jaylen’s younger brother and is currently ranked as a 4 star like his big brother was. He averaged 7.2 points and 4.8 rebounds per game in his first few games playing 17U EYBL.

Vegas Elite- Nike EYBL

Offered Players: 2020 Josh Christopher, 2020 Noah Taitz, 2021 Jaden Hardy, 2021 Zaon Collins

Almost 14 of the total offers that the Huskies have handed out for 2020/2021 are to players on the Vegas Elite squad which averaged nearly 100 points per game. Unfortunately, Julian Strawther recently spurned the Huskies for Gonzaga and 5-stars Josh Christopher and Jaden Hardy have shown no interest in Washington. However, the Huskies are in the running for a pair of players from Bishop Gorman on the squad. 2020 combo guard Noah Taitz is 6’3 and is a low 4-star guy and also looking closely at Stanford and USC. He averaged 12.5 points per game on 30% 3pt shooting and 86% from the FT line. 2021 point guard Zaon Collins understandably deferred in the scoring department on a team filled with so many deadly scorers but racked up the assists with 5.8 per game and a better than 10 to 1 A/TO ratio. Collins also holds offers from Arizona State and UNLV.

ML20 Enforcers- Adidas Gauntlet

Offered Players: 2020 MarJon Beauchamp

With the commitment of Strawther to Gonzaga it seems like Beauchamp is now officially the priority scorer in the class of 2020 as both were similar players. He is certainly the featured player on the ML20 team, leading them with 17.6 points per game while shooting 55% from the floor and a nearly 4 to 1 A/TO ratio. He received offers this week from Alabama and Michigan after emphasizing that his recruitment was still 100% open. Beauchamp stated that it seemed like schools assumed he was coming to UW and stopped offering. We’ll find out over the coming months whether MarJon legitimately wants to leave Seattle or if he simply feels a litte disrespected by the relative lack of offers compared to other players with similar rankings.

Right behind Beauchamp has been Federal Way’s Tari Eason (2020) who hasn’t gotten a UW offer yet but certainly seems talented enough to warrant one if Hop thinks he can fit well in to the Husky system. His only offer is currently from Wazzu but that will change rapidly if he keeps averaging 15+ points per game.

Zach Lavine- Adidas Gauntlet

Offered Players: 2020 Mitchell Saxen

Both the local teams of ML20 and Lavine are 6-1 right now and ML20’s only loss is to Team Lavine by just 2 points. Ingraham’s Mitchell Saxen is currently the leading shot blocker in the Adidas Gauntlet and appears the most likely center for the Huskies to take in this class. He’s averaging 9.7 points, 7.9 rebounds, and 2.1 blocks per game and if he continues those numbers then you can bet the Huskies won’t continue to be his only power conference offer. One other name to keep an eye on for Team Lavine is 2020 Mt. Si’s Jabe Mullins (13.7 ppg, 4.3 apg) who is still looking for his 1st power conference offer but has several D-1 offers already.

The List- Class of 2020

(in approximate order of likelihood to end up at Washington)

The Huskies will likely have 3-4 spots available for the class of 2020 and they’d ideally like a balanced class with 1 PG, 1 SG/SF, 1 PF, and 1 C.

In a Good Spot

PG Lamont Butler Jr.- 3 star, #232 overall

C Mitchell Saxen- 3 star, #193 overall

PF Kendall Munson- 3 star, #179 overall

SF MarJon Beauchamp- 5 star, #21 overall

So You’re Saying There’s A Chance

CG Noah Taitz- 4 star, #151 overall

PG Daishen Nix- 5 star, #14 overall

PF Isaiah Cottrell- 4 star, #55 overall

The Blutarsky (0.0%)

PG L.J Cryer- 4 star, #66 overall

SG Jalen Green- 5 star, #2 overall

SG Josh Christopher- 5 star, #7 overall

PF Evan Mobley- 5 star #1 overall

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