Five-star shooting guard Jalil Bethea picks Miami over Kansas, Villanova

Michelle Kaufman, Miami Herald on

Published in Basketball

MIAMI — The Miami Hurricanes’ historic run to the Final Four last spring continues to pay dividends.

Five-star shooting guard Jalil Bethea, one of the nation’s most coveted Class of 2024 recruits, announced Wednesday that he will attend the University of Miami.

He chose UM over his other two finalists, Kansas and Villanova. He announced his commitment live on the 247Sports You Tube channel. Bethea, a Philadelphia-area native, is ranked the No. 7 overall prospect in the 2024 class by 247Sports.

Bethea went on an official visit to Miami in early September, which included attending the UM football team’s 48-33 victory against Texas A&M. He also visited Kansas, LSU, Syracuse, Villanova and Temple.

Although Villanova is closer to home for Bethea, he has strong ties with the Hurricanes through UM assistant coach D.J. Irving, a Philadelphia native who was on the staff at Roman Catholic High and worked with Bethea’s AAU program Team Final, whose alumni include former UM standouts Ja’Quan Newton, Davon Reed and Lonnie Walker IV. Bethea averaged 18.9 points for Team Final, shot 49.8 percent, and his stock rose in recent months.


“It all came down to where I see myself improving in the future,” Bethea said. “I feel like this is the best stage for me to play on, one of the best coaching staffs to play for and I’m glad I picked Miami. I just can’t wait. Miami fans will not be disappointed.”

Bethea, out of Warminster (Pa.) Archbishop Wood high school, is the second major recruit to pick Miami this week, following Isaiah Johnson-Arigu, the four-star small forward from Minneapolis Totino-Grace, who chose the Hurricanes over Iowa, Northwestern, Texas Tech, and Virginia Tech.

“Miami is cool, coach L [Jim Larranaga] is one of the best coaches out there and I have a great relationship with everybody on the team, the coaching staff and all of that,” Bethea told 247Sports. “The relationship I have with coach D.J. [Irving] is real good because of the whole thing from Team Final and him being from Philly, it’s just how we started it off right there.”

Adam Finkelstein, the director of scouting for 247Sports, wrote: “Jalil Bethea proved to be one of the best scoring guards and shot makers in the country this year. He’s a shooter who can make tough threes, both on the move and off the dribble. While he can occasionally hunt his looks and settle for contested ones, he still put up incredibly efficient numbers in the EYBL, knocking down 41 percent of his threes and 86 percent of his free throws. He was even extremely efficient inside the arc, shooting percent on two-point field goals while also showing an ability to raise his release point in the lane. He plays the game with an edge and only needs to consistently harness it in the right way while he continues to build up his body.”

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