The last week has been very busy in college basketball. This comes as no surprise to any die hard college basketball fan. For those of you who aren’t sure if you can keep up, don’t worry because Pypeline has you covered.
The Illini staff have continued to be busy since the contact period began. Their next target seems to be 6-foot-6, 180 pound combo guard Ramel Lloyd Jr. A native of Calabasas, CA, Lloyd Jr. is one of the rising talents across the country. And since the contact period began last Monday, he has received many offers. He now has a total of 19 scholarship offers of which includes programs such as Arizona State, Arkansas, Baylor, Dayton, Georgetown, Kansas, Illinois, USC, San Diego State, and Washington. Lloyd Jr. gave his thoughts about how the first week of the contact period has gone for him.
— Ramel Lloyd JR (@ramellloyd22) February 27, 2019
“For me, the last week has been pretty good to me. I have about twenty plus programs reach out to me and have picked up five offers from Illinois, Washington, Rutgers, Oklahoma State, and Baylor.” he told me, “it’s been a fun process. Coaches calling and texting you is always a fun time. Everything about it is positive, so I think everyone enjoys the process. I’m blessed enough to have coaches call so I just want to take advantage of that and be thankful for it.”
Lloyd Jr. seems to be taking advantage of all the opportunities he is getting. Prior to the pandemic, he had taken some unofficial visits to San Diego State, Arizona State, and multiple unofficial visits to UCLA and USC. Living on the west coast has made it easier for Lloyd Jr. to make it out to these schools but he will not be limited in his recruitment to staying close to home. During the pandemic, Lloyd Jr. has also been busy having virtual visits with Louisville and Rutgers.
Lloyd Jr. is one of the more versatile guards in the class of 2022 in my opinion. He handles the ball well enough to take his defender of the dribble. But at the same time, he is able to use his post skills and awareness to diversify his offensive game. Developing this skill-set is difficult but Lloyd Jr. has had an advantage with his father. Ramel Lloyd Sr. played college basketball at Syracuse and Long Beach State from 1996-2001. After his time is college, Lloyd Sr. went on to play professionally. Having someone who has gone through the process before will definitely help Lloyd Jr. in the long run.
'22 Ramel Lloyd Jr. @ramellloyd22 of @BoysTaft is one of the fastest rising prospects in the nation (#51 ESPN). The 6'6 PG is one of, if not the most, versatile player in his class. Big guard with a ton of upside on both ends. As talented as they come! pic.twitter.com/7QqBsd04OW
— PGH Basketball (@PGHBASKETBALL) June 18, 2020
ESPN recently released its top-60 rankings for the 2022 recruiting class and Ramel Lloyd Jr. checked in as a four-star prospect and No. 51 in the country. Lloyd Jr. would be a massive get for the Illini and would continue the recent trend of landing elite talent for the program. And so far, Illinois seems to be prioritizing Lloyd Jr. as one of their top class of 2022 targets. For several weeks now, Illinois assistant coach Orlando Antigua, has kept in contact with Lloyd Jr.
#51 and rising ! https://t.co/6dc4ar5SZo
— Ramel Lloyd JR (@ramellloyd22) June 17, 2020
I asked Lloyd Jr. about his relationship with coach Antigua and he had nothing but positive things to say about him.
“It’s funny you ask that. He was actually the first coach that reached out to me after the open period began. He texted me around 7:00 AM pacific time and wanted to let me know that they (Illinois) would be recruiting me.” he told me. Soon after the open contact period began, Lloyd Jr. was offered by Illinois.
Excited to have received an offer from the University of Illinois 🔵🟠 pic.twitter.com/geASEIFF68
— Ramel Lloyd JR (@ramellloyd22) June 15, 2020
The Illini coaching staff’s relationship with the Lloyd Jr. camp will definitely play a factor in whether the program can secure his services when the time comes for him to make a decision. However, there are other aspects that can help push the needle forward.
Lloyd Jr. addressed some of those aspects of Illinois that he likes the most.
“Obviously, they are in the Big Ten. It’s a great conference with a lot of great competition. Looking at Illinois specifically, I love the tempo and the way they push the ball. I haven’t met or had the chance to speak to the head coach (Brad Underwood) yet, but I do love how he utilizes Ayo Dosunmu.” he told me, “He’s a big guard like me, so I love to see the type of things he can do in that system. They (Illinois) seem like they’re on the up and coming in the Big Ten after having a couple of good years. They are definitely a school I pay attention to.”
It is still extremely early for sophomores in terms of their recruitment so much can and probably will change as we inch closer to their college decisions. However, Lloyd Jr. expressed that he will definitely be considering using one of his official visits for Illinois.
“I will definitely be considering using an official visit on Illinois in the future.” he told me.
For more on Illinois and college basketball recruiting, follow me on Twitter @asethi03.