East Lansing, MI – Michigan State basketball received three National Letters of Intent from Max Christie, Pierre Brooks, and Jaden Akins – signing everyone from their 2021 recruiting class.
"In summing these three players up, you've got great student-athletes … I think a really encouraging thing is they are guys that can shoot the ball, but I think they are guys that want to win and guys that want to be here, said MSU head coach Tom Izzo. "That, to me, is more valuable than anything. They're all going to come in nationally ranked; they're all going to come in knowing our program. All three of them come from great families. It's going to be a family affair here at Michigan State, and I'm happy to have them aboard."
Christie, the best shooting guard in Illinois and his respective class, is the No. 15 prospect in the country; he will be a welcome addition for the Spartans.
"At 6-6, Max can play the point; he can play the two, he can play the three, he can be a passer and distributor, he can be a scorer, he can be a rebounder. I think his length and his range make him a very valuable player. He is a very good athlete who I think is going to get better and better as he gets more and more into it," Izzo said. "He's a great facilitator. He's got to continue to grow defensively like a Gary Harris or a Denzel Valentine. He kind of reminds of us a combination of those two guys; only he's bigger than both of them."
The first of the class to commit to MSU, Brooks, a 6-foot-5, 180-pound shooting guard out of Detroit, averaged 23.0 points, 7.0 rebounds, and 5.0 assists in his junior season at Douglass Academy.
He is the No. 3 recruit in his home state and a top-15 guard for the class of '21.
"Everybody is your favorite, but Pierre is one of my favorites because he was the first to commit. He started the ball rolling. The other thing I really enjoy about Pierre is his dad's a coach. Whenever you get a coach's son, you get a guy who understands the game. At 6-5, he's built like a linebacker. He has toughness. Maybe like all three of them, this kid has probably worked as hard as anyone I've known," said Izzo. "He's probably come the farthest. Everyone said he can't do this or can't do that, and pretty soon, he's playing better and better. I think Pierre Brooks has a chance to have a phenomenal career here because of the things we value: toughness, the ability to shoot the ball from long, long-range, play multiple positions."
Akins, the next true point guard for Michigan State, will look to take over the Spartan offense in the near future.
At 6-foot-3, he's among the best in the nation and the No. 1 player in the state of Michigan while averaging 23.0 points, 8.0 rebounds, 4.0 assists, and 2.0 blocks per game at Farmington High School.
"He's definitely the most athletic of the three. He's got phenomenal athletic ability, he has the ability to shoot it from long range, but he can get into the paint any time he wants it. He is maybe the best dunker of the group; he's had some incredible highlights. He has a very quick first step," Izzo said. "I think he's going to be a good offensive player and a good defensive player. He too was a bit unappreciated in our state, but as last spring went on and this fall, he's risen up in a lot of people's minds."
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