Michigan already has the country’s No. 1 men’s basketball recruiting class for 2021. The newest rankings have several of the signed prospects listed even higher than before.
Kobe Bufkin and Frankie Collins were the biggest risers among the six Michigan signees, as judged by 247sports.
The recruiting site updated its own rankings on Wednesday, which caused changes to the 247sports composite rankings. The composite draws on ratings from various recruiting services. The previous update came on Nov. 11.
Bufkin went from No. 63 to 52 in the composite. The 6-foot-4 guard who plays for Grand Rapids Christian jumped 43 spots in the 247-specific rankings. Jerry Meyer, a recruiting analyst for the site, explained.
“Bufkin has displayed impressive primary ball handling skills in recent outings,” Meyer wrote. “Combine these skills with his athletic explosiveness, and you have something special. There is a lot of value to a complete three-position perimeter player.”
Bufkin’s high school season hasn’t started yet, but it’s possible Meyer is referring to AAU games or open gym runs.
Collins is just a couple of spots behind Bufkin at No. 54, after previously being listed at 59. Collins rose 19 spots in the 247 rankings. The 6-foot-1 point guard has been playing in several nationally-televised games with his Coronado High School (Henderson, Nevada) teammates.
“Collins is proving that he is that invaluable catalyst-type point guard who makes his teammates better,” Meyer wrote. “It isn’t just that Collins is a willing passer, but he is a talented ball handler who creates scoring opportunities. Collins is that type of player whose impact on the game is bigger than just his skill set.”
Michigan’s two five-star recruits, Caleb Houstan and Moussa Diabate, held steady in the latest rankings. Houstan, a 6-foot-8 guard/forward, remained at No. 8; Diabate, a 6-foot-10 forward, is still No. 20. Both are playing their high school seasons in Florida — Houstan at Montverde Academy and Diabate at IMG Academy.
The first two players to commit to Michigan for 2021 saw their recruiting stock improve slightly. Isaiah Barnes, a 6-foot-7 guard/forward from Chicago, moved up a couple of spots to 112. Will Tschetter, a 6-foot-8 forward from Stewartville, Minnesota, went from 157 to 154.
All six prospects signed their national letters of intent during the early signing period in November.
“We worked very hard at identifying high-character players and the pieces that are going to help our program,” Michigan head coach Juwan Howard said in a statement at the time.
“We want to make sure we have quality young men from quality families who can come in and represent the Block ‘M’ and this university with dignity and grace. To all six I say, welcome to the Michigan family!”
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