Aside from some of the seedy aspects to it, one of the things that makes basketball recruiting so difficult to follow is just the fact that multiple classes are being recruited at once. When it comes to football all the recruiting is generally limited to the next year's class, with maybe a few high school juniors getting offers along the way. That's not the case in basketball.
There are high school freshmen already getting offers from Illinois. Seriously, there have been two that I know of already. One is small forward Willie Jackson from Ohio who received an offer this week, and then there's point guard Jayson Tatum from Missouri.
Tatum is expected to be one of the top players in the 2016 class, and he recently added an offer from Illinois to the pile he's already had piling up.
At the NY2LA Sports Swish N Dish Tatum clearly put himself in the conversation for the top 2016 prospect in the nation. He led his St. Louis Eagles 16U team to a championship. He is one of the most coveted young prospects in the country with offers from Florida , Memphis , Missouri , Marquette , and Kansas . Recently he says he also added one from Illinois .
"They talked to my dad who is a high school coach. He relayed the message to me. It is good to hear college coaches are interested in me."
What does he like about their program?
"Their style of play. They are not too structured. You can play your game. I really like how Brandon Paul got to do what he wanted too."
Now keep in mind that Tatum is already 6'7, so it's possible by the time he goes to college he'll no longer be a point guard.
And if you're wondering how much longer that actually is, think of it this way: if Tatum ends up coming to Illinois he'll get here for the senior seasons of Kendrick Nunn, Malcolm Hill, Austin Colbert, Maverick Morgan and Jaylon Tate.
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