Colorado lands its first five-star rookie under Boyle

Colorado lands its first five-star rookie under Boyle

Five-star senior Cody Williams signed for Colorado on Wednesday, giving the Buffaloes their first five-star men’s basketball prospect in at least 15 years.

Williams chose Tad Boyle’s program over LSU, although Arizona, UCLA and USC, among others, also recruited him.

“The program and the players are very connected, and they’ve built a great culture,” Williams told ESPN. “I consider myself a part of that. I love the staff and Coach Boyle. When Coach Boyle tells you something, you know it’s the truth whether it’s on or off the pitch. It’s to help you. He’s a very genuine person.”

Williams is the younger brother of Jalen Williams, the Santa Clara star who came out of nowhere to be selected by the Oklahoma City Thunder in the NBA draft lottery last year.

“My brother was a huge help in the process,” he said. “He told me what to look for in a program. A place where I would fit in, play and learn. I see myself achieving my goals in Colorado. Playing in the NCAA Tournament, being one of the best freshmen across the country and one day in the NBA. I intend to take it all one step at a time.”

A 6-foot-8 small forward from Perry High School, Arizona, Williams is ranked No. 14 in the ESPN 100 for the Class of 2023 — ranking as the No. 3 small forward in the nation. He averaged 15.5 points, 4.1 rebounds and 2.1 assists in 24 games with Vegas Elite on the Nike EYBL Tour last spring and summer.

Williams, like his brother, has an incredible upside, and his ceiling is as high as anyone in the 2023 class. He was one of the biggest lifters in the spring and summer, soaring over 35 places after its excellent performance on the base circuit.

He gradually went from a prospect to a player with potential for more. Williams’ versatility at both ends is impressive with terrific position size. Offensively, he beats defenders with his 3-point shooting, midfield and practice play. His scoring comes from his soft touch and fluid movement and his size allows him to score on smaller defenders. He can create his own shot but is also able to find teammates.

On the defensive side, that’s where he could shine in the future thanks to his speed and size, and he makes that a priority.

“I love defense,” Williams said. “I focus on my defense because most don’t pay enough attention to it. My brother now has playing time because he’s committed to keeping, changing and bouncing back.”

Williams is Colorado’s first five-star recruit since the ESPN scouting database began in 2007 and the Buffaloes’ first ESPN 100 commitment since the Class of 2021. He joins four-star guard Courtney Anderson, who picked Colorado over early in the fall.

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