Baylor freshman Keyonte George will be must watch TV throughout the 2022-23 college basketball season.
18 year-old Keyonte George has yet to play a single college basketball game; but I’m here to confirm he is in fact the truth.
George was the prize recruit of Baylor head coach Scott Drew’s 2022 recruiting class. He was rated as a five-star prospect from Lewisville, TX who played his high school ball at the famed IMG Academy in Bradenton, FL.
George was rated as the No.3 player in this years class by ESPN and was also a McDonald’s All-American who turned down offers from the likes of Kansas, Kentucky, Texas and dozens more to play for Drew at Baylor. He is the highest rated recruit to sign with Baylor in program history.
George spoke about his reason for committing to Baylor and said, “It was really close to home but coach Drew, he’s just a really good guy and no matter if he’s having a good day or bad day, he always has a smile on his face and the staff is like a family.” He added, “On my visit, it felt like I had already committed to the school and was already there so that was a big factor; feeling like a family there.”
George is almost as polished in dealing with the media as he is shooting a three with a defender in his face. Not too many 18 year-old’s have his moxie and savvy both on and off the court.
The accolades and rankings aren’t what makes George the truth because there have been dozens of five-star players who ended up going nowhere and fizzling out in college.
All you need to do is watch George for two minutes and its easy to see he’s destined to play in the NBA in the very near future.
This past week in Toronto, Baylor played a series of preseason games as “Team USA” in the inaugural GloblJam U23 tournament. I watched George play for two minutes against Italy and my eyes literally bugged out of my head at his game. He’s that good.
A few days later, I sat court side at the Mattamy Athletic Centre in downtown Toronto (the old Maple Leaf Gardens arena) and watched the teenager George absolutely torch Team Canada to the tune of 37 points in leading Baylor to a 93-87 win.
Keep in mind, this was a Team Canada squad that consisted of big time college players several years George’s senior including the likes of Marcus Carr (Texas and former All-Big 10 player at Minnesota), Emanuel Miller (TCU), Leonard Miller (G-League Ignite), Stef Smith (St. Johns and 2X All-American East selection at Vermont), Ryan Nembhard (Creighton-Big East Freshman of the Year), Keeshawn Barthelemy (Oregon) and several more.
Drew spoke about his prize recruit while in Toronto and said, “What I’ve liked is his coachability and he cares about winning.” Drew continued, “He’s learning our offence and defence and what it takes to win and making winning plays and I know the guys trust him because he cares about the team winning.”
The main thing that stood out about George’s game was just how effortless it seemed for him playing against such high level opponents. He also plays with a smile on his face which is a rarity for a player so young because most are struggling to catch up to the speed of the game; but not George.
George is an NBA talent without question. It takes all of two minutes watching him to figure that out.
Its not often that a true freshman on a team like Baylor will be relied upon to provide any significant impact. However, its also not often that a player like George comes around.
With the ball in George’s hands, expect Baylor to once again be in the mix for a Big 12 title and perhaps make another deep run come March of 2023.
Write it down, Keyonte George is the truth.