As some expected, Jonathan Kuminga has re-classified into the 2020 class as his High School had their graduation today and he was announced via @TiptonEdits. Kuminga is a 6’8″ wing/power forward he’s big and strong and will be a Top 5 prospect in this class, I’m guessing #3 behind Jalen Green (G-League), and Cade Cunningham (Oklahoma State). Now let’s see where he may be headed this season.
Kuminga had a final list of Duke, Auburn, Kentucky, G-League.
Duke: I’m sure Coach K will find a spot for Kuminga if he choses Duke, but I just don’t see it they have too many options coming in that are also Freshman and return Wendell Moore Jr, Joey Baker, Matthew Hurt also so it’ll be tough for Kuminga to get the kind of production he may get at other schools.
Texas Tech: Kuminga’s brother, Joel Ntambwe plays for Texas Tech and transferred from UNLV after Marvin Menzies was let go as the Runnin’ Rebels head coach, he sat out last season due to NCAA Transfer Rules. We’ve seen one player from this class play with their brother with Joshua Christopher who was seen as a heavy-Michigan lean chose Arizona State to play with his brother, Caleb Christopher who is a Sophomore Guard for ASU. They don’t have any scholarships currently open after getting Mac McClung from Georgetown, but they’ll make room if Kuminga commits, maybe Avery Benson who’s a former walk-on transfers, or reverts back to being a walk-on. Kuminga would start alongside Nimari Burnett, Terrance Shannon Jr, Jonathan Kuminga, Micah Peavy, Marcus Santos-Silva (VCU). With Kevin McCullar, Kyler Edwards, Joel Ntambwe and more off the bench. I would definitely have to consider Texas Tech being a top-10 team if they can get Kuminga, I have them in the late-teens at the current moment.
Auburn: Bruce Pearl proved last season that he can produce one-and-done’s with Isaac Okoro who is a likely top-10 pick this season and has shown the ability to make players play to their fullest strengths. With Austin Wiley, Samir Doughty, and Jared Harper in the past few seasons along with Okoro. They already have a great recruiting class headlined by Sharife Cooper, J.T. Thor, adding Kuminga would help a ton.
Kentucky: The Wildcats have another open scholarship after not landing Evansville transfer, De’Andre Williams who decided to go to Memphis. They did land Olivier Sarr from Wake Forest who still needs a waiver, but this team needs more length, after losing Nick Richards, E.J. Montgomery, and Nate Sestina. If they can get Kuminga and his 6’8″ frame, and elite level skill it could be an incredible get for Coach Cal.
G-League: Corey Evans of Rivals said the other day he expects Kuminga to go pro, whether it’s G-League or Overseas. If he goes to the G-League he’ll join Jalen Green, Daishen Nix, Isaiah Todd, Kai Sotto as part of the G-League pathway program coached by former Laker guard, Brian Shaw. I think with the uncertainty of when the G-League starts, probably in December along with the 2020-21 NBA season, is it really worth the $400,000 when if you drop one draft slot off of your projection, you’ll lose much more than that. If Kuminga wants the money now I understand it for sure, but at the same time if you drop one slot you’ll lose around a million dollars or more depending on where you are selected compared to Mock Draft’s. One thing to remember about the G-League program is this team IS NOT going to be apart of the actual G-League, you won’t see them playing the Erie Bayhawks in a regular season game. They’ll plays scrimmages against some of these teams, practice, learn from pros, but essentially you’re disappearing from the public eye for a year, compared to being on National Television twice a week. I truly think investing in yourself will make you more money than not, Kuminga regardless will be a top-10 2021 pick, but can he the first pick if he has a great college season? Absolutely. Let’s say this, Zion Williamson wouldn’t have been the top pick in 2019 if he didn’t play at Duke in my opinion, he wasn’t even a top 3 recruit in his class. According to 247sports, R.J. Barrett, Cam Reddish, Nassir Little, Bol Bol were all ranked above Williamson,
Prediction: Texas Tech
Playing with your brother has to be something that’s tough to pass up and play for a future NBA coach in Chris Beard, I think Kuminga will learn and develop more at Texas Tech than he would in the G-League.