Indiana picked up its first commitment of the 2023 recruiting class on Friday, when four-star combo guard Jakai Newton picked the Hoosiers live on CBS Sports HQ over Georgia and Vanderbilt, among others. Newton is ranked the No. 67 player in the 2023 class and No. 12 combo guard by the 247Sports Composite. Newton's commitment continues a strong early run of recruiting success for the Hoosiers under first-year coach Mike Woodson.
"The relationships with the coaches and just seeing how the fans react too," Newton told 247Sports about what stood out with Indiana. "They bring a lot of energy."
Indiana has the No. 12 ranked 2022 recruiting class, according to the 247Sports team rankings, and Newton's commitment gives Woodson a strong start with the 2023 class. The 6-foot-3 guard from Covington, Georgia, plays for Atlanta Xpress on the AAU circuit and plays for a Newton High School team that features three four-star prospects from the Class of 2023. Newton is the first from that group to announce a college decision.
With his wingspan, he can play both guard positions and really could be a small forward or a third guard if needed. He has a pull-up game. He attacks the paint very well with the dribble. He's outstanding in transition. He uses his athleticism and wingspan very well on both ends of the floor. He's an impact defender. He's an outstanding guard rebounder and can get up and block shots, even at the rim. He finishes with both hands and has tremendous body control on the move.