CHAMPAIGN (WCIA) — Illinois head coach Brad Underwood didn’t hold much back in his first time publicly talking about his new point guard. Andre Curbelo officially signed his National Letter of Intent with the Illini on Wednesday, the first day of the early signing period, allowing Underwood to talk about his 4-star, Top 60 prized recruit.
“I think he is without question the best passing guard in the country,” Underwood said. “He’s an elite passer and I’ve compared this and it’s unfair cause he’s a high school kid but I’ve compared him to Steve Nash. He has the ability to raise the level of everybody he’s on the court with.”
“It was crazy,” Curbelo told Local 12 Long Island during his commitment earlier this month. “I came here with like no expectations. I didn’t know that I was going to go to a big time program, maybe low DI, who knows DII but worked my tail off on and off the court and this is it.”
Curbelo is ranked the 55th best player in the country, according to 247Sports. The 6-foot guard is originally from Puerto Rico but plays his high school ball for LuHi in Long Island, New York. Curbelo is the second player in the Class of 2020 to sign early with the Illini, joining Coleman Hawkins, who also signed his NLI Wednesday. The 6-foot-10, 3-star forward plays for Prolific Prep in Napa, California.