The list of options for the state’s No. 2 prospect, Simeon’s Talen Horton-Tucker, grew immensely over the past two months. The versatile 6-4 senior, however, shortened that list of contenders –– somewhat.
Horton-Tucker came out with a list of 13 schools Sunday night, a number he said he arrived at in memory of his late grandmother.
“I was 13 years old when my grandmother passed away, and I know she would have been a big part of this process if she were around,” Horton-Tucker said.
Horton-Tucker, once an overlooked prospect by high-majors, is now coveted. His list includes Illinois, Iowa State, Michigan State, Michigan, Florida State, Kansas, Georgia Tech, Missouri, Dayton, Xavier, Georgetown, Saint Louis and Ohio State.
Horton-Tucker talked about consistency when discussing the schools he’s looking at and how he will continued to narrow down his choice.
“How they have been and won as a program, how they’ve recruited me, how they’ve interacted with me and my family,” Horton-Tucker said in reference to how he’s looking for consistency. “I’m looking for a school and staff who treats me as family.”
One down, three to go for Zion Griffin
The red-hot Zion Griffin took his first official visit this past weekend as coach Dan Muller and Illinois State was the first school to get a crack at the state’s No. 3 prospect in the Class of 2018.
While Griffin has three high-major programs on his final list of four, Illinois State has obviously made its presence felt in the recruitment of the athletic 6-6 forward.
“When I left there this weekend I did feel like I was at home,” says Griffin of his official visit to ISU. “You can tell that they want me and that they’ve made me a real priority for them. They’ve been on me from the beginning, and I have a very good relationship with coach Muller and coach [Brendan] Mullins from when he was at UIC.”
Griffin will visit Iowa State this coming weekend and make a trip to Pitt Sept. 15-17 and Kansas Sept. 29-Oct. 1.
“This was my first visit,” Griffin said of his trip to Illinois State. “I really don’t know what to expect on these upcoming visits. Illinois State was great, but who knows if one of these other schools raises it to another level.”
Redbirds land big one in Class of 2019
While Muller and Illinois State try to land a high-profile recruit in the Class of 2018 in Hinsdale South’s Zion Griffin, the Redbirds have to be feeling giddy about the commitment they received from Bloomington’s Chris Payton.
The 6-6 junior, who is among the top five prospects in the Class of 2019, decided to stay home. Payton ended his recruitment very early, committing to ISU on Thursday.
Payton averaged 12.4 points and 8.7 rebounds a game as a junior and impressed in Peoria in helping the Purple Raiders to a third-place finish in Class 3A in March. In two games Payton averaged 17.5 points and 13.5 rebounds a game.
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