Illinois Basketball: 2023 forward Brandon Gardner receives Illini offer

The Illinois basketball team is digging deep into the recruiting front, becoming the first program to offer Brandon Gardner.

The recruiting train keeps on rolling and Illinois is eagerly banking on future success. Most recently, the Illini became the first program to offer Gray Collegiate Academy product, Brandon Gardner.

Gardner is listed as a guard at 6-foot 7, 180 pounds, and is only entering his sophomore season. In 2019, Gardner averaged 4.9 points and 4.5 rebounds per game. With room to grow, Gardner will be a name to look out for in the coming years.

How would Gardner fit in with the Illini and Brad Underwood?

From what I’ve seen so far, Gardner’s height would fit in well with Underwood’s offense. If he chooses to come to Illinois in a few years, he would most likely be teamed up with Luke Goode, an athletic wing from the 2021 class who just committed a month ago.

Both players have the ability to shoot the ball exceptionally well and could become a dangerous Big Ten tandem for years to come.

Illinois is being extremely proactive with going after potential prospects. Underwood has done an exceptional job with rebuilding a once historic team back to relevance again. Last season, the team orchestrated an eight-game turnaround that saw wins against Michigan, Wisconsin, Indiana, Purdue, Penn State, and Northwestern propel the Orange and Blue to its best finish in 15 years.

The future looks even brighter with a loaded 2020 class entering the fold this fall. The only thing missing is an NCAA tournament berth, which would be their first since 2013 and something Champaign has starved for.

Next: Illini offer 2022 Fenwick standout Trey Pettigrew

Offering Gardner now will allow him to showcase his talents throughout his high school career, hopefully leading to more opportunities and additional big-time offers to come. Only time will tell in seeing how his game develops.