Welcome to “Good Morning, Illini Nation,” your daily dose of college basketball news from Illini beat writer and AP Top 25 voter Scott Richey. He’ll offer up insights every morning on Brad Underwood’s team:
Illinois' recruiting efforts in the Class of 2023 still seem to be headed down the same path. Sign four-star forward Amani Hansberry in November and then go to work in the transfer portal next spring if necessary. That said, the Illini staff is still doing its due diligence. Which brings us to another name to know in Class of 2023 guard Dra Gibbs-Lawhorn:
- Illinois got an in-person look at Gibbs-Lawhorn on Friday along with the rest of the loaded Montverde Academy (Fla.) roster. The reigning GEICO Nationals champs also have Class of 2024 forwards Liam McNeeley and Asa Newell and Class of 25 guard Bryce Heard. Those three have Illini offers. Gibbs-Lawhorn, to this point, doesn't despite Illinois' interest.
- Gibbs-Lawhorn is ranked as a consensus four-star recruit in the Class of 2023 by 247Sports, Rivals, ESPN and On3. Both 247Sports and ESPN rank the 6-foot-1, 170-pound point guard as the No. 70 overall prospect in his class.
- Gibbs-Lawhorn, a Lafayette, Ind., native, initially committed to Purdue last December, but decommitted the first week of August. He put up 21 points per game as a freshman at McCutcheon (Ind.), transferred to Real Salt Lake Academy (Utah) for his sophomore season but missed time with injuries and then played part of his junior year at Montverde where he won a title.
- Gibbs-Lawhorn played for Indy Heat Gym Rats on the Nike EYBL circuit this past spring/summer. Teaming up with Michigan State commit Jeremy Fears Jr., Gibbs-Lawhorn averaged 16.2 points, three assists, 2.2 rebounds and 1.5 steals while shooting 48 percent from the field.
Scott Richey is a reporter covering college basketball at The News-Gazette. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org, and you can follow him on Twitter (@srrichey).