High school basketball: JJ Taylor moves to Kanye West’s Donda Academy

The connection between Chicago and California continues. Kenwood junior JJ Taylor has moved to Donda Academy, Kanye West’s new preparatory school in Simi Valley, California. Taylor announced the move on his Instagram account on Friday.

Nimari Burnett was the first local star to switch to California. Burnett helped lead Morgan Park to a state title as a freshman in 2017 and then traveled to California.

Next up was Amari Bailey, who never even went to high school in Chicago. He traveled to Sierra Canyon, California after eighth grade.

The move worked well for Burnett and Bailey, though they went to more established schools. At this point, Donda Academy apparently does not even have a building.

It has basketball stars. Top 100 national talents Zion Cruz, Robert Dillingham, Jakhi Howard and Jalen Hooks all moved to Donda before Taylor. All four players changed their Instagram profile photos to black circles after announcing the move to Donda. Taylor’s Instagram photo is now a black circle.

Dillingham and Taylor both officially visited Kentucky this past weekend. There is speculation that this is where Taylor to the Donda spark first emerged.

Taylor, a 6-8 guard, started high school in Morgan Park and moved to Kenwood after head coach Nick Irvin traveled to take a job in western Illinois. Irvin’s brother Mike Irvin is the coach at Kenwood and runs Mac Irvin Fire, the club’s basketball team Taylor plays with.

Rivals have ranked Taylor as No. 4 in their Class of 2023 rankings. ESPN has Taylor No. 6 in the country, while 247Sports has him ranked No. 8.

“It’s very important to me to be that player, to live up to it,” Taylor said in July about his top 10 national status. “It means something. There’s some pressure on that, and I know and expect people to come after me. But I’m ready for it and want it. I have to keep working to maintain it, to live. up to it, to represent Chicago. I know I’m being monitored. “

Kenwood, with Taylor, Darrin Ames, Davius ​​Loury and Trey Pettigrew, was expected to be one of the top two teams in preseason Super 25. That changes with Taylor out of the picture.

Kenwood coach Mike Irvin says he still expects great things from his team this season.

“I still have five guys who can score 25 on a given night,” Irvin said. “We’re loaded. Darrin Ames. Remember the name. Beware. He’s a superstar in the making. We have another star player in Trey Pettigrew. Darius Robinson is very, very good. We have the first newcomer to the state in Bryce Heard, and junior Davius ​​Loury is a star on the verge of breaking into the top 50 in the country. “

Donda Academy apparently opens the season on November 6 at the Target Center in Minneapolis against Minnesota Prep.

Give a Comment