Ayo on target: 'He's my guy'

Ayo on target: 'He's my guy'

CHAMPAIGN — Illinois has two open scholarships in the 2018 class and holes to fill on its roster. Both of those could be addressed with prospects on campus this week.

Three-star big man Samba Kane arrived in Champaign on Wednesday night per Derek Piper of 247Sports. The near 7-footer from Senegal (via Colorado and now prep school in Florida) could fill the Illini's rim protector need.

And while Illinois added a shooter with Alan Griffin's commitment, another one wouldn't hurt.

Enter Tevian Jones, a four-star prospect out of Culver City, Calif., who will be on campus for an official visit starting Friday. The 6-6 wing is ranked as high as No. 85.

Jones has had a breakout senior season after transferring to Culver City after playing three seasons at Chandler (Ariz.) High School. Jones put up 20.5 points, nine rebounds and 2.5 assists per game for Culver City this season and shot 54 percent from the field and 38 percent from three-point range as the Centaurs made it to the quarterfinals of the CIF Southern Section Division 3A playoffs.

Illinois would like to see Jones in orange and blue. So would future Illini guard Ayo Dosunmu.

"I told him I would try to come down there," Dosunmu said after leading Morgan Park to a sectional semifinal win against St. Laurence on Tuesday. "He's my guy. I really want him to come. I've been on him every day, texting him, 'Come to Illinois.'"

"He can jump. He could do a lot of things. He can shoot," Dosunmu said. "He's the all-around package."

Jones holds other offers from Arizona, California and USC in the Pac-12, Mississippi State, UConn and a trio of Mountain West programs in Nevada, UNLV and San Diego State.

Illinois is back to two open scholarships after Griffin's commitment was followed by freshman guard and 2017 Illinois Mr. Basketball Mark Smith opting to transfer. Dosunmu said that was "tough" news to hear after getting closer to Smith in the last year.

"He was a good player, and I was really looking forward to playing with him," Dosunmu said. "At the end of the day, he did what was best for him and his family. You can't ever doubt somebody for that."

Dosunmu said Smith texted him to let him know he was transferring.

"When he texted me, it just shows how our friendship was going to be," Dosunmu said. "We were very cool. I knew there were a lot of rumors, but I didn't believe the rumors until I heard it was true."

After envisioning sharing a backcourt with Smith, Dosunmu will still do so with Big Ten All-Freshman Team guard Trent Frazier. The five-star prospect out of Morgan Park likes that idea.

"I think I can play with anybody because of the way I play," Dosunmu said. "I play unselfish, and I can just play in a variety of ways. I know (Frazier) wants to bring the program back up, and I want to bring the program back up."

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roach wrote on March 08, 2018 at 11:03 am

AYO says that he can play with anyone ----- except apparently THT.   Go figure

IlliniMike05 wrote on March 08, 2018 at 1:03 pm

Can you point me to where Ayo, himself, said he can't play with Talen Horton-Tucker?