One of the most versatile prospects in the state of Michigan in the class of 2014, Detroit (Mich.) Pershing high school forward Justin Tillman had an up and down junior season for the Doughboys. Starting the year in very productive fashion, an injury slowed the 6-7, 200-pound forwards’ progress. Since recovering from the setback, Tillman hasn’t looked back, a key contributor on one of the best teams in the state, and a force so far on the AAU circuit this spring.
“When I came back I had to make up for that lost time,” Tillman told GoBlueWolverine. “I feel like I’ve done pretty good. I feel like I could do a little more facing up and playing on the wing though.”
Currently holding offers from Bowling Green, Kent State, Indiana State, Oakland, and Detroit, Tillman’s recruiting picture is just beginning to clear up with several high major schools still inquiring and evaluating.
Michigan is another school that dropped in to see Tillman workout, likening his skill set and potential role in Ann Arbor to that of soon to be sophomore, Glenn Robinson III.
“I heard from them later in the season,” said Tillman. “Coach Beilein came to a practice and watched us worked out. Afterwards we talked on the phone and he told me he liked the way I practice and that they’d like to have me (up for a visit).
“They play fast paced. But when they slow it down they can still be in control of it. They get the ball to the big man too.”
Tillman’s relationship with Michigan assistant Bacari Alexander continues to grow, and the Detroit native appreciates the encouragement he’s hearing from the fashionable, Alexander.
“He’s pretty cool,” said Tillman. “Talking to him about anything, he’s a laid back dude, and he’s 100 percent with me. He’d send me things to better me and make me better.”
Michigan State is another in-state school that has had success in the past plucking Doughboys out of Detroit in recently graduated center Derrick Nix and senior to be Keith Appling. But Tillman is looking to create his own path and doesn’t envision a future with the Spartans.
“I would say I have no interest because I don’t like their playing style,” said Tillman of Michigan State.
Tillman has already visited the University of Detroit and is also in the process of planning a trip to Xavier in the near future. Tillman plans to compete at Michigan’s College Practice Camp on June 1st in Ann Arbor.
Tillman had an impressive showing at the NY2LA Swish N Dish at the beginning of April, drawing high praise from FOXSportsNEXT.com National Recruiting Analyst, Brian Snow:
“A bouncy athlete down low, Tillman is very productive. He has a good tough within about five feet of the rim, and is excellent at blocking shots and rebounding. Now he is slightly undersized, but he knows how to produce. Tillman is healthy and it is showing. He needs to continue to get stronger and continue to improve his skill level, but Tillman is showing why a lot of schools in the Midwest are going to be taking a close look at him during the April evaluation period.”