Illinois basketball class of 2025 commit showing off prime scoring ability

The transfer portal is the hot topic right now, but Illinois basketball also has a talented commit who is tearing up the AAU ranks
Illinois v Maryland
Illinois v Maryland / G Fiume/GettyImages

While the Illinois basketball team continues to play transfer portal combat, the fans are getting to see what lies ahead in the future.

Over the span of Brad Underwood being the head coach of the Illini, he has been able to land some big-time recruits. Ayo Dosunmu was his first crown jewel. Kofi Cockburn, Adam Miller, and Ty Rodgers soon followed.

Morez Johnson Jr. is the big get from the class of 2024. The versatile big man will step into the traditional center role next season and give Illinois a big-man presence we haven’t felt since the Kofi days. If Johnson doesn’t go to the NBA after one season, Illinois has the perfect running mate for the dominating big man.

Jeremiah Fears enters the picture in 2025. The 6-foot-3, 175-pound point guard is a four-star recruit who is the No. 31 player in the class of 2025. Playing out at Compass Prep in Arizona, Fears is actually from Joliet, Illinois, and he plays his AAU ball back around the Midwest.

This summer is the last for Fears in the AAU circuit, as he is prepping for his senior year of high school and then the ascent into the college ranks. He suits up for the Indy Heat AAU program, and his final ride in the Nike EYBL AAU circuit has been nothing but spectacular for the future Orange and Blue sensation.

Through five games of AAU ball in the EYBL, Fears is averaging 20.6 points, 4.2 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.0 steals, and 1.0 blocks per game. He is doing it all for his Indy Heat team, and Fears is being fairly efficient, which is a bit rare for AAU.

Fears is only averaging 1.6 turnovers and 1.8 fouls per game at this point. He is also hitting his shots at a clip of 49.4%.

The only area of inefficiency is Fears’ three-point shooting. He is just 7-of-24 from beyond the three-point arc, which is 29.2%. Leading up to the game on Saturday. Fears wasn’t shooting that bad, though. He threw up a 0-of-5 game from the three-point arc on Saturday, but before that, he was shooting 36.8%.

Illinois basketball has more than enough room for Jeremiah Fears to start as a freshman

If there was a possibility of Fears entering the Illinois basketball program this season after his junior year, he would get a lot of minutes. I would likely have fears as the primary backup to Ty Rodgers at the No. 1 guard spot. He would likely log 12-16 minutes per game.

Entering the 2025-26 campaign, who knows what the roster is going to look like? Rodgers and Kylan Boswell, Illinois’ two projected starters in the backcourt, are both going to be seniors in 2025. I think there is a solid chance Boswell has a big year and heads to the NBA after this season. He is going to put up massive numbers in Underwood’s offense.

If Boswell does depart for the NBA, I have no doubt Fears will come into the program and start at the No. 2 guard spot. With his tremendous ability to score the basketball, you can’t leave him off the court. I think Rodgers and Boswell will both be handling the ball this upcoming season, and that is what I expect in 2025-26 with Rodgers and Fears as well.

Fears is a great player. There will be plenty of room for him to start when he enters his freshman season. Some would say, Illinois should be a team to be feared… Yes, Fears puns. Get used to it.

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