Juwan Howard and the Michigan Wolverines just lost out on another top guard prospect in the 2021 class, as in-state four-star Pierre Brooks committed to Michigan State Wednesday.
The 6-foot-5 guard from Frederick Douglass Academy in Detroit chose MSU over the Wolverines, Xavier, Iowa, Illinois and a handful of other schools.
Brooks is widely considered one of the top players in the state of Michigan in the 2021 class, along with two other four-star guards, Grand Rapids native Kobe Bufkin and Farmington native Jaden Akins.
For Howard and the Wolverines, they will have to go back to the drawing board at the guard position in this class. Brooks is the second guard target to commit elsewhere — five-star Khristian Lander chose the Indiana Hoosiers over U-M back in February.
It is likely they will still go after Lander, considering he is currently rated the top point guard in the country, but other guards to look after include the aforementioned Adkins and Bufkin, and five-star Kennedy Chandler. The two other guards Howard has offered in the class are five-stars — Max Christie and Trevor Keels.
The guard position is going to be incredibly important in 2021 for Howard and company after landing just one in the 2020 class, four-star Zeb Jackson. Departures after the 2020-21 season will come from graduates Eli Brooks and incoming transfer Mike Smith, and a potential jump to the NBA from Franz Wagner, if that doesn’t happen sooner.
With Christie and Keels being 100 percent crystal balls to Duke and Virginia, respectively, and the craziness already ensuing from Chandler’s recruitment, I would look for more offers to go out to guards in the near future. The odds are not in Michigan’s favor to land any of these kids right now, and they are going to need to take in a couple guards in the class. Of course, there is always time for them to catch up, but things aren’t looking good as of now.
Regardless of what happens, Howard and company have a lot of work ahead of them.