With about one minute left in Sunday’s game, Word of God Academy (N.C) shooting guard Rawle Alkins threw down a two-handed dunk to put an exclamation point on the Rams’ 121-101 win over Victory Prep (Texas).
The slam gave Alkins 51 points for the afternoon and capped an impressive scoring performance in the Bluegrass Showcase at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School.
Alkins had “only” 18 points at halftime, and Word of God led 49-47 at the break, before the five-star shooting guard went off in the second half.
Despite missing a few minutes with a cut inside of his mouth that required attention from the trainer, Alkins scored 33 points in the half and made six three-pointers.
“That’s just me,” he said. “I’m a guy, when I get going, I play with a lot of energy and feel like every shot is going to go in, regardless of where it is. Regardless of how far, regardless of who’s on me.
“I just feel like, when I’m going, I’m unguardable.”
Rivals.com ranks Alkins as the No. 9 overall prospect in the super-talented class of 2016, and he’s one of the top uncommitted players left in the group.
Alkins — a 6-foot-4 native of Brooklyn, N.Y. — is in his first season with Word of God, and the move has attracted considerable recruiting interest from in-state schools North Carolina and North Carolina State.
He said both programs have given him a season pass to their home games, and he’s made good on the offers, attending multiple games at each school so far this year.
Alkins says he’s still considering eight schools: UNC, N.C. State, Kentucky, Louisville, Indiana, Kansas, St. John’s and UNLV.
Indiana Coach Tom Crean and U of L assistant coach Mike Balado were both in Lexington to see Alkins play Sunday.
Though there’s been little news of UK’s involvement in Alkins’ recruitment in recent weeks, he said he’s still interested in the Wildcats’ program and he’s still been hearing from UK’s coaching staff, specifically noting that Tony Barbee has been in contact recently.
UK assistant coach Kenny Payne was at Dunbar High School to see Sunday’s matchup between five-star centers DeAndre Ayton and Thon Maker, but he arrived after Alkins’ game had ended.
Alkins said he has not yet taken any of his five official visits because he’s still waiting to receive his SAT scores. (He took the exam last weekend).
He mentioned the possibility of taking an unofficial visit to Louisville sometime soon.
And he’s clearly still interested in UK.
“They get guys to the league,” he said of the Wildcats. “I’m a player that wants to go to the league eventually. And they get you better, too.”
Alkins specifically mentioned his “good friend” Isaiah Briscoe — a New Jersey native who is in his freshman season at Kentucky — and the transformation Briscoe has gone through during his short time in Lexington.
“I watched his body transform from his senior year — being that big, chubby guard — to his freshman year in college being that big-bodied (player),” Alkins said. “Have you seen his body now? I was shocked when I saw that.”
Alkins will not make a college decision until the spring and plans to wait until current college players reveal their own NBA decisions before making his choice.
That said, he’s not afraid of competition at the next level. And he says there’s still room on UK’s 2016-17 roster for a player like him.
“I’m a guy that thinks that no matter where I go, I’m going to shine,” he said. “Right now, I think I’m the No. 1 shooting guard in the country. That’s my position. That’s the position I want to play. But I feel like I can be a combo guard. So, if I’m not playing shooting guard, I think I have room to be a small forward or a point guard.
“At the end of the day, I feel like, no matter where I go, I’m going to be looked at, I’m going to be seen, and I’m going to shine.”