With two upperclassmen in the team’s expected perimeter rotation in grad student Antwoine Anderson and junior Jalen Adams, UConn was in need of a guard in the 2018 class. Enter 4-star point guard James Akinjo, who made his verbal commitment to Kevin Ollie’s program. News of Akinjo’s commitment was first reported by A Dime Back.
Akinjo, who attends Salesian HS in Richmond, Calif., and was a standout on the Oakland Soldiers grassroots team during the summer, is UConn’s first commitment in the 2018 class. It should be noted that no official decision has been made regarding a possible waiver for wing Sidney Wilson, who transferred to UConn after spending a short period of time at St. John’s.
Should Wilson receive a waiver, he would be eligible to compete immediately as opposed to having to sit out the year in residency before making his UConn debut in 2018-19.
Akinjo’s profile rose during the Summer with the Soldiers, as he helped lead the program to the EYBL title at the Nike Peach Jam in July. Averaging 18.8 points, 6.8 assists, 4.3 rebounds and 1.1 steals per game, the 6-foot tall point guard was named MVP of the event. Akinjo, who took his official visit to UConn this past weekend, picked the Huskies over offers from California, Iowa State, Maryland and Virginia.
Akinjo joins a program that under Ollie’s leadership has played multiple point guards on the court at the same time on numerous occasions, and that could be the case in 2018-19 as well.
Next season Akinjo will join a backcourt that could included the aforementioned Adams, redshirt freshman Alterique Gilbert and sophomore Christian Vital. Gilbert, a McDonald’s All-American out of high school, played in just three games last season due to a shoulder injury.