It was a very, very long road for unsigned junior college 6-foot-7 sophomore forward Kwintin Williams. After overcoming poor grades and a shortage of college credits, and putting himself in a position to qualify academy from the junior college ranks, many college programs waited for Williams to finish his academic requirements.
After recently completing the requirements for his AA degree, Williams gave the biggest verbal commitment in recent years in the state of Arizona when he decided to end his college recruitment this week, and give a verbal commitment to UCONN head coach Kevin Ollie and his basketball staff.
Williams had taken official recruiting visits to Cal-State Northridge and Portland State this year, and it had looked as though Williams would choose between the two schools. Williams had also held on to offers from Texas Christian, Washington State and UNLV. Williams was also still receiving strong interest from Oregon, Arizona State, Texas Tech, Kansas State, Memphis, Minnesota and Tennessee State.
With those close to him suggesting that he should go to a smaller program to have the most success, Williams, in the end, would follow his heart and decided on the UCONN Huskies - shocking scouts, media and the Arizona basketball community with such a huge commitment.
One of the most athletic junior college talents in the country last season and over the summer (2016), Williams had to overcome a lot of diversity for himself. After academic issues and a troubled past, the gifted prospect seriously improved his academic resume through taking a large load of classes in the fall, winter, spring and summer to catch up on a past poor academic performance,
After a strong freshman season for Pima head coach Brian Peabody, Williams was prepared to have a big sophomore campaign. But after he decided to transfer junior college programs last summer and land at Arizona Western Junior College in Yuma, AZ, Williams learned that he would have to sit his sophomore year due to academic troubles. He also had questionable relationships with both college programs, which caused many schools to back off him throughout the year.
Williams had a great showing last summer in a couple different junior college events, but it was his performance last summer in Jerry Mullen's JUCO Showcase in Kansas City, during the busy recruiting month of July that exposed his talent to many division-I college coaches. In the event, according to Jerry Mullen, the nation's top junior college scout for the past 30 years, Williams was one of the top overall prospects in the event.
A native of Alaska, Williams has overcome tremendous odds in his life to get to this point, and his verbal commitment to any college is a major accomplishment and a tremendous example for today's youth. I worked closely with this young man over the past year, and have marveled at his work ethic in his basketball craft, and also his work ethic on his academics. I am very hopeful that this young man will continue this same work ethic in his future, as he will have 3 years of eligibility for UCONN. If he can stay focused on the court and in the classroom, the sky is the limit for Williams. I have enjoyed our relationship and am very proud of Williams' accomplishments in life.
Arizona Hoop Review Scouting Report: Williams is a very strong and athletic 4-man that also possesses a good ability to step outside and handle and shoot the basketball, although he is still at his best around the painted area where he is able to finish strong at the rim with power dunks and strong finishes. Williams is a high-riser and is among the best overall athletes in America's 2017 junior college class. A 4-man, Williams should develop into a 3/4 man over time with continued hard work on his perimeter skills. A solid shooter, Williams is a good mid-range player and still needs to add more consistency to his long range jump shot to open up his full game. He is a solid ball handler. OK passer that sees the floor - a developing part of his game. Williams is an active and strong rebounder that is quick off his feet, and is a good finisher that gets to the free-throw line quite often. He runs the floor hard. A good low post defender, and solid defensively on the perimeter, but needs to focus more on this area of his game. Good shotblocker. One of the top juco prospects in the West for 2017.