Kendrick Nunn States His Case While Others Come To The Forefront 

Kendrick Nunn States His Case While Others Come To The Forefront 

While the prime time matchup at Chicago State University between Simeon and Morgan Park featured talent up and down the board including 6’7 class of 2013 forward Jabari Parker and 6’5 class of 2011 University Of Louisville recruit Wayne Blackshear among others, in the end it was Kendrick Nunn who stole the show.  The 6’2 class of class of 2013 guard finished with a game high 19 points in leading Simeon to a 60-51 victory.

Nunn was clearly the best player on the floor last night in Simeon’s victory.  Yes, he was better than both Parker and Blackshear.  Make no mistake about it–Nunn has been outstanding for Simeon all season long and consistently puts up numbers when he is on the floor.  However, with his performance versus Morgan Park, Nunn has solidified his ranking as our new #2 ranked prospect in Illinois from the 2013 class–ahead of both 6’8 Tommy Hamilton from Whitney Young and 6’7 Alex Foster from De LaSalle.

We challenge anyone who has watched Nunn on a regular basis to come up with a weakness in Nunn’s offensive game.  O.K.–perhaps one could say that he needs to tighten up his open court handle a bit.  However, he is quick enough and smart enough to know how to get into the lane and beat defenders to the basket.  And then there is everything else that he brings to the table. 

Nunn is exceptional in transition, as he repeatedly gets out on the break and finishes in tremendous fashion.  Not only that, but he is also a good 3-point shooter and can consistently hit shots off the dribble.  To top everything off, Nunn is also an excellent passer and can reek havoc defensively on account of his length and ability to play the passing lanes.

The bottom line is that Nunn has all of the makings of an ideal high major combo guard.  Seeing as though so many people are hung up on player comparisons these days, we will throw one out for everyone.  In many ways Nunn reminds us of a younger version of Luther Head.  In fact, the skill sets are quite similar, with the only significant difference being that Nunn lacks Head’s overall athletic ability (although Nunn is highly athletic in his own right).

At the present time Nunn has received scholarship offers from Memphis and Xavier with several others showing heavy interest.  Quite frankly, we are more than a bit surprised that none of the high majors in Illinois have offered Nunn yet, although DePaul University had their entire coaching staff on hand at Chicago State last night and Nunn has also been on the campuses of both Illinois and Northwestern.

And now some analysis from everything else that we took in this weekend:

Sleepers At Crane

There are plenty of reasons why Crane Tech High School in Chicago deserves to be the #1 seed in the class 3A sectional at Riverside-Brookfield when the seedings are announced.  Two of those reasons are 6’4 class of 2012 wing Willie Conner and 6’2 class of 2011 guard Kieran Woods.  Both deserve to be getting substantial recruiting attention.  Connor finished with 27 points in Crane’s win over Leo yesterday at the Whitney Young Shootout and converted 5 three-point field goals.  He has a quick stroke, solid range and good upper body strength which allows him to shake off defenders.  Woods, who also scored 27 points versus Leo, is extremely quick to the basket in transition and has range that extends beyond the 3-point arc.  He is an excellent mid-range scorer off the dribble and a solid penetrator.  What college level he ultimately ends up at could come down to how well he further develops at the point guard spot.

Michael Powell And The Gray Twins Continue To Step Up

While 5’11 class of 2011 point guard and University Of Wisconsin recruit George Marshall has been sidelined due to injury, the team at Brooks College Prep in Chicago has succeeded primarily due to the efforts of 5’11 guard Michael Powell and the bookend forward combination of 6’6 Keith Gray and 6’6 Kevin Gray.  All three are enjoying outstanding seasons and once again proved to be the difference in Brook’s 54-51 win over St. Ignatius at Whitney Young.  Powell, who scored 16 points versus St. Ignatius, has done a great job of filling Marshall’s shoes.  He has shown vast improvement and as a result has proven that he can be a D1 point guard.  Not only can Powell score when he needs to, but he has developed a strong cross-over dribble which allows him to consistently get into the lane, which is the primary reason why he has begun to flourish as a playmaker.  The Gray twins continue to do the dirty work around the basket and are usually quite productive in that area, as evidenced by the fact that both put up double-doubles yesterday, Keith finishing with 17 points and 12 rebounds while Kevin totalled 15 and 13.  We would definitely like to see both of them work on developing a face-up game, but the fact that they go to war in the paint more often than not should enable them to ultimately end up at the D1 level.

Russell Woods Is A Prospect

The Whitney Young Shootout also allowed us to get a good look at 6’7 class of 2013 post Russell Woods from Leo.  While Woods may still be a bit of a project offensively, there is no doubt in our minds that he is going to be a good one.  Woods has good hands and is therefore solid off the catch in the low post.  He also has good footwork and while he still needs to get stronger in terms of physique, he plays strong, as he gets good post position and is a hard worker.  There is no question that he is one to watch in the 2013 class, which explains why he has already begun to receive widespread D1 interest.

Taylor Remains #1 In 2012 

6’7 forward Steve Taylor from Simeon unquestionably remains the top ranked in prospect in Illinois from the class of 2012 hands down.  While Nunn was Simeon’s best player last night, Taylor was right behind him, finishing with 14 points including four trifectas.  Taylor has tremendous face-up ability, as he can consistently spot up and knock down shots from beyond the 3-point stripe due to his smooth, quick release.  In addition, he is highly athletic and while there are times that we would like to see him get more done in the paint, he has shown us that he is strong on the glass and that he can be a force on the interior defensively.  There are plenty of college programs that agree, with offers already having come from Northwestern, Southern Illinois, Xavier and New Mexico State along with strong interest from plenty of others. 

We welcome comments regarding this story or any other entry published by Illinois Prep Bulls-eye. They can be made by e-mailing us at [email protected].

Continue to check in with Illinois Prep Bulls-eye for all of the latest as it pertains to recruiting and high school basketball in Illinois.


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