Shabbaz Muhammad is only 16 years old, and he will only be a junior in high school this fall. But he has already met and spoken with some of the premier college basketball coaches in the country. That is because he is rated as the 4th best high school boys basketball prospect in all of the class of 2012 by Rivals.com. They also have him rated as the top shooting guard coming out that year. So, as you can imagine, that makes Shabazz a very popular young man. He has basketball scholarship offers already from no less than 14 schools, including such national powers as North Carolina, Kansas, Duke, Texas, and UCLA.
Scout.com describes Muhammad as a â€œâ€¦very talented lefty with a versatile game. Can score in a variety of ways and a very good athlete. Potential elite prospect in the class of 2012.â€ So how will he decide from so many good offers for his services? â€œI think itâ€™s definitely the coach and the style of play,â€ Shabazz told Scout.com. â€œThe relationship I have with the coaches. Talking with the coaches on the phone has been a great experience and Iâ€™m looking to have a really good relationship with the coach.â€
But for now Shabazz is just a high school student. And his coach at Bishop Gorman High School in Las Vegas knows that he has someone special in Muhammad. â€œWe could tell pretty early on that he was going to be a special talent,â€ Gorman coach Grant Rice told the Las Vegas Sun. â€œThereâ€™s guys that have â€˜itâ€™ â€” that â€˜itâ€™ factor. Heâ€™s got it. He definitely does.â€
Athletic prowess seems to come second nature throughout Shabazzâ€™s family. His father, Ron Holmes, scored over 1200 points in a four-year career at the University of Southern California from 1981-85. Shabazzâ€™s older sister, Asia, is a budding professional tennis player. And his younger brother Rashad, a rising sophomore at Gorman High, already is 6 feet 4 inches and already has basketball scholarship offers of his own.
While Muhammad may have stars in his eyes dreaming about college basketball and beyond, heâ€™s working hard in the here and now, plugging away during the summer, honing his skills both on his own and at various all-star camps. All that while the average high school kid is trolling the mall during the heart of the summer. Muhammad truly seems wise beyond his years as he tackles this whole process. â€œIâ€™ve just got to take it in stride and take it slow,â€ he told the Las Vegas Sun. â€œIâ€™ve pretty much prepared for it.â€