The Michigan Wolverines landed the first member of the 2021 recruiting cycle on Wednesday in the form of quick-rising forward Isaiah Barnes out of Oak Park, Illinois, making it the first time head coach Juwan Howard has landed a recruit out of his native Chicago area.
Barnes was unranked up until recently, as a strong junior campaign put him into 247Sports’ top 100 prospects at No. 85. According to 247’s composite, Barnes is the No. 106 overall player in the country and a four-star recruit. He currently stands around 6-foot-7 and 180 pounds.
His development has always been about the physical tools coming along, which will remain the case moving forward. This is a long and athletic wing prospect that appears to be best suited to play the two or the three and he has proven to be a solid defender at multiple spots on the floor.
There is not a ton of video out there on him, especially with athletic seasons coming to a halt due to the pandemic, but by all accounts Barnes can best be described at this stage of the game as inconsistent or streaky offensively. A lot of the reports and film on him show him as a catch-and-shoot type of prospect, though he did start to put the ball on the floor a bit more and create for himself in his junior season. His improvement here could be the difference between being a three-and-d guy off the bench or someone