#10 Jalen Wilson: Profile, NBA Draft Projections, Scouting Report, Accolades, Stats & Latest News

#10 Jalen Wilson, Kansas Jayhawks Junior Forward

School: Kansas Jayhawks

Position: Forward

Height: 6′ 8″

Weight: 225 lbs

Class: Junior

Hometown: Denton, Texas

Jalen Wilson may be the best all-around forward in college basketball today, starring for the Kansas Jayhawks. He is currently in his junior season and is the driving force behind the Jayhawks being one of the best teams in the country. He is averaging 21.3 PPG, 8.8 RPG, and 35.1 MPG, all team highs, and will most likely be a 1st-Team All-America selection.

While Wilson is probably a low first round or high 2nd round pick, his draft stock has been rising rapidly with his outstanding junior season.

Recruitment and Early Career

Wilson originally opted to play for Michigan but decommitted when coach John Beilein left the school for the NBA. He was the crown jewel of Kansas’s 2019 recruiting class, representing the only top-50 recruit under coach Bill Self that year.

Although his high-profile status foreshadowed early stardom in his collegiate career, Wilson suffered a season-ending ankle injury during his freshmen year in the 2019-2020 season. Because he appeared in only 2 games and the NCAA granted an extra year of eligibility to winter athletes anyway due to COVID, Wilson was able to redshirt the season.

By all accounts, Wilson had plenty of success for the next 2 seasons after his redshirt freshmen year, averaging about 11.5 PPG and 7.5 RPG combined. He played a major contributing factor in the Jayhawks’ 2022 NCAA Tournament championship run.

However, it wasn’t until the 2022-2023 season that he finally reached the high level of stardom that resulted in his recognition as one of the best players in Division 1 men’s college basketball.

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Who are Wilson’s parents?

Both of Wilson’s parents, Derale and Lisa Wilson, were successful athletes in their own right. Derale played Division 1 basketball for Texas Christian University and then professionally in Europe. Lisa played college basketball for Seminole State College and Oklahoma City University before an ACL injury ended her college basketball career.

Both have been very supportive of Jalen’s career and have been in attendance for many of his games, including the 2022 national championship against North Carolina.

Where did Wilson go to High School?

Wilson attended Guyer High School in Texas, a Class 6A school, and was a four-year varsity player. During his senior year, he averaged 18.1 PPG, 7.5 RPG, and 3 APG, good for both All-State and All-Regional honors during the 2018-2019 season.

His play that season was the driving force behind Guyer reaching the regional championship game during the 2019 Texas state playoffs. Interestingly, Wilson’s jersey number in high school, #10, is the same number he currently wears at Kansas.

Wilson’s Age

Born on November 4th, 2000. One of the older players in college basketball, Wilson is 22 years old, probably causing many of his opponents to ask, “Is Wilson a senior yet?” Because he chose to redshirt his freshmen season due to his ankle injury and the COVID eligibility ruling for winter athletes, Wilson is a redshirt junior and has another year of eligibility left.

He entered the last 2 NBA drafts, but eventually withdrew from them due to his lagging draft prospects. In hindsight, opting to return for another year of college basketball may have been the best decision he ever made, due to his rising draft status.

Wilson’s Vertical Leap and Athleticism

Wilson earned an invite to the 2022 NBA Draft combine after having a very successful run at the NBA G League Elite Camp. He along with several other prospects went through scrimmages and several other athletic tests to measure their draft potential. Wilson had a 3/4 court sprint of 3.26 seconds, a max vertical jump of 30.5 inches, and a standing vertical jump of 26 inches.

What you’ll find on Wilson’s NBA Draft prospect scouting report

This year’s go to guy for the Kansas Jayhawks. On the collegiate level Wilson scores, rebounds, gets to the line, knocks down free throws and defends. When his two best skill sets of scoring and rebounding are firing on all cylinders the Jayhawks are 8-0 in Wilson’s double-double games.

For Kansas Wilson is a high usage rate player that takes a lot of shots and scores at all three levels. Wilson’s shots come by way of attacking off the dribble, taking advantage of smaller defenders in the post, midrange and long range jump shots.

Wilson is effective and proving to be a solid driver at the collegiate level. Coach Bill Self often runs sets that put Wilson in position to curl into the paint from left side of the floor. This allows Wilson to attack the basket off the dribble going to his right and strong hand or pull up for the mid range jumper.

Wilson also takes north of 6 shots per game from long distance. He has the ability to pull up off the dribble and catch & shoot. At times he pulls the trigger from NBA range. Unfortunately he only connects on a low percentage of shots from downtown.

In the post Wilson is at his best when attacking from the low right block against smaller defenders. Or attacking right into the paint from the low left block. His big strong tree trunk legs powers his back downs and get him with in striking distance of the basket.

Wilson forcefully creates space with his elbows and shoulders while drop stepping or reversing direction on his pivots towards the baseline to setup right handed field goal attempts.

In addition to being adept at drawing fouls while attacking downhill Wilson effectively draws fouls in the post. Plus he’s a solid free throw shooter and reliable from the charity stripe.

Not only is he reliable from the charity stripe you can depend on Wilson to rebound at his position. Wilson’s lift may be limited but his determination, physicality, anticipation and timing are the main reasons he is currently at the top of the Big 12 leader board for total rebounds.

Wilson works both sides of the glass. On the offensive end he’s quick of his feet for second chance opportunities. On the defensive end his fundamentals are sound. Plus he actively chases down boards.

What Wilson does on the defensive side of the ball doesn’t fill the stat sheets but his presence is felt. He’s active, energetic and engaged. He stays in front of his man, bodies up with physicality, contest shots, rebounds the miss and has the ability to push on the break.

His foot speed and horizontal athleticism allows him to be a decent lateral and eager help defender. But sometimes his over eagerness to help on defense can be a detriment to his team. It leads to Wilson helping too far off of his man and being out of place when rotating or recovering.

For all that Wilson does at the college level a role in the NBA won’t require him to be that same all-around player in the early parts of his career.

At the next level Wilson will bring his grind, physicality and good size to the small forward position. Wilson’s ability to rebound at his position, defend, knock down midrange jumpers, draw fouls and get to the line on downhill attacks and mismatch post ups will translate at the next level.

If Wilson can develop certain aspects of his game he has the potential to also fill a 3&D or combo forward role. But before he can become that guy Wilson will need to become less predictable on offense (he wants to attack to his right). Plus Improve the rate at which he knocks down the three ball. Especially if he wants to shoot as many threes as he does at Kansas this season.

Also his limited lift serves him on a platter as lunch meat around the basket. Wilson will need to quickly figure out how to avoid blocked shots and finish efficiently amongst the NBA’s athletic shot blocking beast.

2022-2023 NCAA Jalen Wilson Stats


2022-2023 Season and Beyond

While Wilson’s Kansas Jayhawks career may not have started well, it has certainly blossomed into an impressive display of individual success. He has helped lead Kansas to the top of college basketball once again this season and is looking to spearhead the Jayhawks to a 2nd straight championship run.

Although he has never been considered a major draft prospect, Wilson’s incredible junior season is quickly turning heads among NBA draft scouts and making a successful pro career look brighter by the day. While the late first round or early second round is the most likely landing spot for him now, Wilson could land in the top 25 of the 1st round if he continues to develop.

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The Latest Jalen Wilson News

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