Texas Tech made a notable addition to its future backcourt Tuesday when it landed guard Nimari Burnett as part of its 2020 recruiting class.
Adam Zagoria @AdamZagoria
“Nimari is the ultimate winner. He’s our true leader on and off the court. He’s an unselfish player who can run a team and score at all three levels. He embraces guarding the other team’s best player which is fitting with Texas Tech. Nimari is the coach’s dream" @coachfuca https://t.co/3InSmxCRz0
Burnett, who is 6'3" and 185 pounds, is a 5-star prospect and the No. 22 overall player, No. 5 combo guard and No. 7 player from the state of Illinois in his class, per 247Sports' composite rankings.
He is talented enough to be a primary contributor for his new team from the moment he steps on campus and can either handle the ball as a creator or play off it and take advantage of openings as a perimeter shooter.
Burnett is physical enough to play through traffic and either score himself or facilitate when additional defenders collapse.
The Chicago native moved to California to continue his high school career in 2017, and Orion Sang of the Detroit Free Press noted he thrived at multiple AAU events. One of those events was the Nike EYBL in Atlanta, where he averaged a head-turning 23.8 points, 3.8 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.8 steals per game against impressive competition.
The same athleticism that allows him to get into the lane on offense helps him stay in front of ball-handlers as a perimeter defender, and he has enough size to challenge shooters.
Burnett's ability to impact the game in a number of ways as a versatile playmaker will help him find a role in various lineup combinations as soon as his freshman season.
He also continues what has been an excellent run of recruiting in recent years for the program:
Jeff Borzello @jeffborzello
Texas Tech has landed four top-50 prospects in the last three classes after not previously landing a top-80 recruit in the ESPN recruiting era. Chris Beard’s in-home visit with Nimari Burnett back in September changed the direction of this recruitment. Burnett was blown away.
If he lives up to his potential as a scorer, passer and defender, he can propel the Red Raiders on a deep NCAA men's tournament run and set the table for other top-notch recruits to follow in his footsteps.