Michigan Basketball Recruiting: Kobe Bufkin Commits To U-M
Michigan Wolverines basketball coach Juwan Howard has officially added his third pledge to the 2021 class. In-state guard Kobe Bufkin, Rivals.com's No. 61 player nationally and a four-star prospect, chose U-M over Michigan State, Ohio State, DePaul and LSU in announcing his commitment on social media Friday afternoon.
Bufkin is the No. 1 rising senior prospect in the state of Michigan.
Grand Rapids Christian coach Eric Taylor said Howard and his staff did a great job recruiting his standout. The fact that Bufkin's family was a "Fab Five" household couldn't have hurt, but it wasn't the ultimate factor in his decision.
"At the end of the day, I think it’s kind of unique to say, ‘Yeah, I’m playing for a coach that was a part of that history at that time.’ But, I don’t think it weighed a ton into his decision, in terms of them being in his top three." Taylor said. "Really, it was about the connection with the coaching staff ... same thing with all these programs with great coaches. Obviously, you have to give Coach [John] Beilein a ton of credit for what he did and the program that he built, [but] I think there’s just a new era, kind of a new regime. I think that’s intriguing to Kobe."
Christian has now recently sent Xavier Tillman to MSU, Duane Washington to Ohio State and now Bufkin to Michigan.
"It’s great when you have two outstanding programs in your backyard and you get to choose and have the opportunity to play at either one of those schools. What Coach [Tom] Izzo has done at Michigan State and the great tradition they have. And then Michigan, Juwan brings a new perspective, and Kobe could have the opportunity to have the ball in his hands more at Michigan."
There was also a connection with assistant Saddi Washington, he added. Washington bridged the gap between Beilein and Howard and was a huge factor in landing the four-star.
Rivals.com's Eric Bossi likes what U-M is getting in Bufkin.
"A skilled and versatile guard who can play both on or off the ball, Bufkin is a rangy rising senior who still needs to add bulk to his lean frame," he said. "But he can shoot some, he has some burst at the rim and shows wiggle off the dribble."
Watch for more on Bufkin's pledge in the hours and days to come.
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