Darius Austin Shines In AAU Ball

Each spring, there seems to be several basketball players who jump onto everyone's radar with their spectacular play. One guy who has done this so far is 2014 Cahokia wing Darius Austin. He has looked tremendous with the Southwest Jets, and Illinois is taking notice.

Darius Austin is a 6'-5" shooting guard from Cahokia High School. He is an explosive playmaker with the ball in his hands. He can make plays for others or score himself. Several Big 10 schools have been in to see Austin during open gym workouts, including Illinois.

In fact, the Illini have been one of the mainstays during the early stages of Austin's recruitment. Head coach Bruce Weber recently came to an open gym to see Austin and AAU program mates Malcolm Hill and Raymond Doby. Austin discussed what he likes about the Illini.

"I like their style of play. I think I would really fit into their system."

Southwest Jets head coach Dana Morgan shared the schools showing interest in his guard.

"Illinois, Purdue, Michigan, Tennessee, Missouri State and SLU."

Morgan says that Austin and Doby plan on making a trip to Champaign in the near future.

"We are trying to set up a visit for them to see the campus sometime this spring."

Austin has visited several schools already and is enjoying getting familiar with the programs that are recruiting him. But don't expect him to pull the trigger on a commitment in the near future. He plans to wait until his junior year.

Morgan described Austin's game this past season as a freshman for a Cahokia team that advanced several rounds in the state playoffs.

"I think he had a real good season. He made second team all-conference and honorable mention all-area. I thought he played well down the stretch. He started to become their go-to guy."

Austin believes he has improved most on his ball handling skills in the past year. Another aspect that has stood out to scouts is his passing ability for a bigger guard. He talked about how he puts in extra work in this area.

"That's something I spend time working on after practice."

Scouts have been giving Austin rave reviews with his recent play with the Jets according to Morgan.

"Darius has been superb. He has been putting up about 22 points per game. He has been really good and is getting better and better. He is now showing he has a total game where he can handle the ball, shoot the three, and go to the basket."

Austin brings a lot of versatility to the table because he can play and guard three positions at the next level. Morgan shared his vision for Austin down the road.

"I see him as a two/three combo in college. He can step out and handle the ball. He is going to get more explosive and athletic as his body matures. I think he is going to be a real fine wing in college."

The Cahokia athlete is excited to play on the AAU circuit with his close friend and teammate Raymond Doby on the Southwest Jets. He says they are looking to make a name for themselves this spring and summer

"I am looking forward to Raymond and I being on the radar by the end of the season."

The way he is playing, he is certainly doing that. Austin has great size already for the shooting guard position and is continuing to strengthen his body. He is explosive with the ball in his hands and is a monster driving to the hoop at full speed.

His ability to score on the interior is complimented well by his excellent passing and ball handling. He also rebounds at a high rate. Austin is playing with a lot of confidence, and his potential is starting to shine through.

Morgan said it best when talking about Austin's upside.

"I think this kid hasn't even reached where he is going to be yet."

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