Richard Davenport covers recruiting for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. He is the host of Recruiting Thursday, a weekly radio show that airs from 7 to 8 p.m. on 92.1 FM in Fayetteville; 93.7 FM in Little Rock; 95.3 FM in Fort Smith; 96.3 FM in Hot Springs; 104.3 FM in Harrison/Mountain Home; and 106.9 FM in Arkadelphia.
The Recruiting Guy:
UA coaches’ NBA experience big for prospect
ESPN top-20 boys basketball prospect Kendall Brown included the University of Arkansas in his top 10 because of aggressive recruiting and a detailed plan on how Razorbacks Coach Eric Musselman plans to use him.
“Basically, I narrowed my list to where I would fit best and who was recruiting me the hardest,” Brown said. “Arkansas is showing me how they would use me, and how I would fit into the offense … and the impact that I would have.”
A Minnesota native, Brown, 6-8, 205 pounds, had more than 20 scholarship offers before narrowing his list to Arkansas, Ohio State, Baylor, Minnesota, Illinois, Arizona, Kansas, Marquette, Maryland and Virginia.
He averaged 17 points per game at Sunrise Christian Academy in Bel Aire, Kan., this season after playing his sophomore season at Woodbury (Minn.) East Ridge.
Brown described how Arkansas is recruiting him hard.
“Everything like texting, calls, FaceTime-like presentations and really showing what I could do there,” he said.
ESPN rates Brown as a 4-star prospect, the No. 4 small forward and No. 19 overall recruit in the nation for the 2021 class.
Musselman and assistant Clay Moser, also a Minnesota native, hosted Brown for a virtual tour May 5 and again Tuesday.
“It was really good,” Brown said of his first tour. “They showed me everything they could without me being there. I really liked it.”
In addition to Musselman’s NBA background, others on the staff also have experience in the league. Moser arrived in Fayetteville after being with the Los Angeles Lakers for more than seven years.
Assistant coach Corey Williams played with Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls in 1992-93 and the Minnesota Timberwolves in 1993-94, while director of student-athlete development Earl Boykins played in the NBA for 13 years.
That experience is attractive to Brown, he said.
“Yeah, definitely, it’s always great to have NBA experience and knowledge with you to help you along the way because they know what it takes to get there,” he said.
He said Musselman’s energy is similar to someone he knows.
“My coach is like that, too, and he’ll push me a lot,” Brown said.
With no visits allowed to college campuses because of the NCAA dead period, the 2021 prospects in football and basketball face a more difficult task in deciding where to attend college.
“It’s very difficult, but I’ll pray about it a lot and talk it over with my family,” Brown said. “Everything happens for a reason.”
Brown, who said he’ll most likely sign during the early signing period in November, has a 3.7 grade-point average and is considering business as a major.
He broke down his game.
“I’m a big guard, and I’m versatile,” Brown said. “So if I have a big on me, I can take him out on the wing, and if I have a small guy, I can just post him up. And I play defense, so that leads to my offense.”
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