Virginia Commonwealth’s assembly line of high-energy players gained another part for its Havoc style.
This one comes from the MotorCity. Justin Tillman, a 6-7 ½, 195-pound rising senior forward at Pershing High in Detroit, committed to Rams coach Shaka Smart during the weekend.
Tillman is VCU’s second four-star recruit for 2014, according to ESPN’s ratings. Point guard Jonathan Williams, who grew up in the Richmond area before moving to play at national high school programs in New Jersey, committed in March.
Tillman plays in a similar pressing scheme at Pershing, one of Michigan’s storied programs, and VCU’s style factored into his decision.
“He’s got a motor,” Pershing coach Wydell Henry said. “He runs like a deer. He’s never tired. He goes baseline to baseline in about 3-4 seconds every time down the court.”
Tillman also fits Smart’s preferred mold of players with length. He has a 7-2 ½ wingspan. He has a midrange shot and can play the 3 and 4 spots, although he’ll need to gain weight.
“He is a rebounding machine,” Henry said. “Anything around the basket, he’s getting his hands on the ball.
“He’s got tremendous upside.”
Tillman said he had offers from Iowa, Iowa State, Xavier, Dayton, Providence, Indiana State, Detroit and others. He was getting interest from several high-major programs.
Tillman missed most of last season with a stress fracture in his foot. He only played in about 7-8 games, Henry said, and averaged about 16 points and 10 rebounds.
NCAA rules prohibit coaches from commenting on recruits until they sign. The early signing period begins Nov. 13.