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West Michigan standing out early in 2023 basketball recruiting

Coaches now able to contact 2023 athletes via phone, text
West Michigan standing out in early 2023 recruiting process
Posted at 10:08 PM, Jul 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-06 08:23:03-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Recruiting is starting to heat up in the 2023 boys basketball recruiting class and West Michigan is not short on talent.

Early on, three standouts are receiving a lot of college attention, including Grand Rapids Catholic Central guard Kaden Brown.

"It was crazy, I had 15 to 20 colleges texting me and calling me," Brown said. "It was kind of overwhelming."

On June 15, college coaches were permitted to contact student-athletes in the Class of 2023 and they didn't waste any time contacting the top talent in our area.

"I woke up in the morning and saw I had a few messages from a few coaches and I was pretty excited," added Muskegon guard Jordan Briggs.

Others, like Brown, stayed up past midnight to see who texted or called.

"I had a couple of coaches call me early in the morning at like 1 AM, then they just started to roll in a little bit more as the day went on," Brown added.

Godwin Heights guard Jakhary Towns says he's heard from more than a dozen schools, including Tulsa, Toledo, Miami (Ohio) and Coastal Carolina, among others.

"I had a feeling I'd get some calls but I didn't think I'd be getting the calls from the bigger universities so early, I thought I'd have to wait until my junior season or even senior year," Towns admitted.

All three have picked up scholarship offers in the past two weeks.

Western Michigan head coach Clayton Bates offered Kaden Brown during an unofficial visit at the end of June while Oakland University followed just a day later.

Meanwhile for Briggs, he has seen three offers thus far from Ferris State, Bethune-Cookman and Central Connecticut State.

And Towns has received local scholarship offers so far with other regional and national coaches knocking at the door.

It can all be very overwhelming for 16- or 17-year-old student-athletes.

"It has definitely been something new for me, it's a lot," Briggs told FOX 17. "It's my first time going through it. I'm kind of trying to get used to it and adapt to it but it's been fun getting to know all of the coaches."

Brown, Towns and Briggs are all rooting each other on throughout the process as well. In fact, all three know each other quite well after playing AAU basketball together as kids.

"We grew up playing together," Briggs mentioned. "Me, Kaden and Jakhary all played together in AAU so we really know each other well. We've all been working really hard to get to where we are now and it's paying off."

Towns, Briggs, Brown
Jakhary Towns (left), Jordan Briggs (middle) and Kaden Brown (right) after an AAU basketball game growing up.

The list of colleges will continue to grow for all three as the days go by, but they're all staying focused and being patient for the right fit.

"In the future, I plan to pick a college that's right for me, that has a family aspect that wants me to have big dreams and aspirations; I'm just looking for that school," said Towns.

And Brown isn't putting too much stock into the recruiting process just yet as he works on improving his game this summer.

"As quick as something can come to you, it can be taken away, too," he added. "I just have to keep working, keep staying focused and don't let it really get to me. I have to keep playing how I play."

The next step for the juniors-to-be will come on Aug. 1 when the class can take official college visits.