Mark Turgeon and his staff already locked down one best backcourts in the 2014 class with: Romelo Trimble, Dion Wiley and Jared Nickens. The live recruiting period kicked off on July 10, and now the Maryland coaches are focused on finding the perfect big man to complement the class.
One of their top targets is Riverdale Baptist forward Chinanu Onuak, who showed off his skills at the Reebok Breakout Classic in Philadelphia last week. Over the course of three days, Turgeon, Spinelli, and Hill all stopped by to check out the big man in action.
"I think I have been doing pretty well, I played hard," Onuaku said. "I am just doing what I need to do to help my team win."
That included taking a NBA-range 3-pointer.
"They left me open I figured I would take a chance," Onuaku laughed.
FoxSportsNEXT basketball recruiting analyst Rob Harrington noted that Onuaku has a "surprising jump shooting touch," but the big man really makes his impact at the other end of the court.
"The 6-10, 250-pound center is a physical rebounder who does his best work on the defensive glass," Harrington noted. "He uses his size and strength to seal off would-be offensive rebounders."
"His footwork and low block offense remain a work in progress, but he's competitive head-up against nearly every big man in the class with just a few exceptions," Harrington said. "As such, he'll big a major contributor at the next level."
Onuaku spent some time with both Jared Nickens and Romelo Trimble, who also attended the Reebok Breakout Classic. The two Terp commits were doing their part to convince the big man to join them down in College Park.
"They are just saying come here [Maryland] so we can win a championship," Onuaku said. "That's pretty big because I would love to play for a championship."
The four-star prospect said he has been talking to the Maryland coaches this summer and he is developing a good relationship with his recruiter Dalonte Hill.
"I think they would do a good job developing me as a big man," Onuaku said. "They have some good coaches and they would do a good job helping me get to the NBA."
If Onuaku had any doubts about Maryland's ability to send player to the NBA, his questions were answered during a recent trip to College Park.
"I went down there [to Maryland] for the NBA Draft. I watched it with the team in the players lounge," Onuaku said. "Everyone was going crazy when Len got picked. So that was pretty cool."
Still, Onuaku is not ready to name any favorites this point. Along with Maryland, Onukau said DePaul, Xavier, and Seton Hall are all coming after him hard.
Onuaku still has several tournaments left this summer with his AAU team, DC Assault, and he is not thinking about making a decision anytime soon.
"I am just thinking about basketball this summer," Onuaku said. "I might start thinking about a decision closer to the end of my season or maybe even signing day."
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