When thinking about the future of Michigan basketball, there’s a lot to be excited about. Not only will next year’s team be filled with solid players like Hunter Dickinson and Jaelin Llewellyn, but Juwan Howard and his staff have proven that they can recruit their butts off and convince talented prospects to come to Ann Arbor.
One of those talented young prospects Michigan fans can look forward to watching is 2024 commit Christian Anderson Jr., who committed to the Michigan Wolverines this past October, partially because he loved the connection he made with the coaching staff.
“Because the coaching staff, Juwan Howard and all the other coaches, they were really the ones that noticed what I could do,” Anderson Jr. said to Maize n Brew on Tuesday. “They wanted my grades, they wanted my family, they wanted the whole package. And it was really just a good fit overall. The culture there, everything that comes with it, that’s why Michigan is the school that I chose.”
Spending the majority of his childhood in Atlanta, Georgia, Anderson Jr. spent a few years living overseas in Germany. His father, Christian Anderson Sr., played pro basketball from 2000-2010, playing in Germany, France and Australia.
Anderson Jr. is thankful to have a great support system, including his dad, who has coached a number of his teams.
“I’m just lucky because I can have my dad coach me every day and not worry about what I’m going to train or things like that,” Anderson Jr. said. “My Dad knows what he’s talking about, he’s played and he’s kind of been through the journey I want to get to, so I’m pretty lucky.”
It’s a bit unusual to commit to a university at such a young age, as Anderson Jr. committed to Michigan before his sophomore season of high school basketball even started.
His father says that that early commitment speaks to how confident their family is that Michigan is a great situation for the young point guard to thrive, as he feels Ann Arbor can be a long-term home for his son.
“He always says he never has to really sacrifice to do the sport, because it’s what he loves to do, it’s what he likes to do, but at the end of the day he actually lives it.” Anderson Sr. said. “He’s so committed to it, and at the end of the day, when we commit to something like Juwan Howard and the University of Michigan, you know, he’s going to stay there.”
“He’s going to make it happen,” Anderson Sr. continued. “He’s not going to be swayed by better things, unless something drastic happens. That’s where he’s committed to, that’s where he wants to go. He’s not a fly-by type situation, he’s worked his whole life.”
The 2024 four-star point guard has already been turning heads at Nike EYBL showcases this spring. His team, team CP3 EYB, is 8-0 in their first two 16U sessions. They’ve already qualified for Peach Jam later this summer, a showcase where some of the top high school prospects get the chance to play other talented young players from across the country.
When you watch the point guard, it’s pretty easy to tell which pro players he’s tried to emulate his game after, as he has a quick release from three and already has pretty great court vision.
“I like to model my game after Steph Curry, Chris Paul, those type of guys,” Anderson Jr. said. “Michael Jordan, like the mentality and the aggressiveness, the shooting of Curry, being a floor general like Chris Paul and passing it, helping my teammates and my team get better.”
It’s safe to say that the young point guard already has the support of past Michigan players. His father mentioned that Dickinson and several other players reached out to him on Instagram shortly after his commitment, plus Anderson Jr. and his dad thought it was really cool that a former player came to watch him play and offered them tickets to an NBA game.
“Juwan actually texted us during the draft when Franz Wagner got drafted,” said Anderson Sr., “Franz Wagner actually came to the EYBL to see us and left us tickets (to a game) against the Hawks.
Anderson Sr. has been thrilled to see the support that Michigan has offered to not only his son, but also to his entire family.
“It’s been a great family situation,” Anderson Sr. said. “I think of it as a love-at-first-sight situation. Juwan is a professional, and I think he saw the professional in my son, and that’s what makes it so special.”
The full Peach Jam schedule for later this summer will be released here.