Juwan Howard has suffered his first setback in player personnel as the Head Coach of the Michigan Wolverines. A setback he inherited due to John Beilein heading to the NBA.
On Wednesday afternoon, former 4-star Class of 2019 Michigan commit Jalen Wilson chose Kansas over North Carolina and Michigan after he decommitted from Michigan following John Beilein’s announcement that he would be the next coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Wilson had a long story with the University of Michigan. He committed to play basketball in Ann Arbor back in May of 2018. He was faithful to the maize n blue and even signed his national letter of intent in November of 2018 as he was ready to become a Wolverine.
Three days after Beilein’s announced his decision, Wilson decommitted and was granted freedom from his NLI. He later scheduled visits to both Kansas and North Carolina in late-May, early-June.
Juwan Howard would made retaining Wilson a priority in the early days of his new tenure, according to Sam Webb of 247sports.
Wilson was the No. 50 recruit in the nation, the No. 13 small forward in the class, and the No. 8 recruit from Texas.
He will stay closer to home and play for the Kansas Jayhawks next season. Wilson is an immediate impact player. He will come in and likely be a starter for the Jayhawks next season.
The 6’8” forward is a lights out shooter, something the Wolverines will be desperate for next season. He is an all-around offensive machine who can light up the scoreboard and is currently projected as a future first-round talent in the NBA Draft.
Michigan’s 2019 Class will finish at 118th in the nation, and 12th in the Big Ten with only one commit (Cole Bajema) and three open scholarships. The three open slots remaining can still be filled by transfer players.
However, it is also important to note the work that Howard has done in the 2020 recruiting class. It seems that so far Howard has kept the commitment of 4-star PG Zeb Jackson who has been raved about by many of the top scouting outlets. He also sent an offer to Joshua Christopher, the No. 7 recruit in next year’s class. On top of that, he offered 4-star small forward Jabri Abdur-Rahim, who has built a strong relationship with Saddi Washington over the past few years.
While missing out on Wilson is a huge setback for 2019, its important to give time to first-time head coaches like Howard time to show what he can really do from a recruiting perspective.