Jalen Brunson is undoubtedly one of the top players in the Class of 2015, and given the fact that he plays his high school basketball in the state of Illinois he’s a very important recruit for Illinois head coach John Groce. Brunson’s taking his official visit to Illinois this weekend, and with that in mind a former Illinois guard took to Twitter to sell Brunson on the benefits of remaining in state for his college years.
Dee Brown, who along with fellow guards Deron Williams and Luther Head helped lead Illinois to within one victory of a national title in 2005, rattled off a series of tweets as to why Brunson should attend Illinois. Brown also noted that if Brunson were to do that, his impact on the program could be greater than that of Brown and Williams.
Those are just two of the tweets Brown sent out Thursday evening, and in regards to the impact landing Brunson could have on Illinois basketball he has a point. In Groce’s short time at the school Illinois has landed in-state recruits, with eight members of their current roster hailing from Illinois, but none arrived on campus with the level of acclaim that Brunson would should he decided to attend Illinois.
Among the Illinois natives on the current roster are seniors Rayvonte Rice (Champaign), Tracy Abrams and Nnanna Egwu (Chicago), and sophomores Malcolm Hill (Belleville), Kendrick Nunn and Jaylon Tate (Chicago). All six will be key figures for Illinois in 2014-15, and with a very important visitor in Brunson on campus this weekend they’ll factor into the future beyond this season as well. Because for as important as the coaches’ sales pitch is, the words from players about the school and coaching staff are just as (if not more) critical.
Brunson’s remaining official visits will be to Villanova (September 4-6), Temple (September 11-13), Michigan State (September 19-21) and Purdue (September 26-28).