Northwestern is having a rough go of it on the court this season, but coach Chris Collins is killing it on the recruiting trail so far. The Wildcats opened an early Christmas present (or a late Hanukkah present, depending on what you celebrate) on December 20th by signing three star PG Johnnie Vassar, a Chicago product who is finishing his high school career at JSerra Catholic High School in San Juan Capistrano, California.
Vassar is averaging 18.6 ppg and 4.7 apg for JSerra in his senior season and, despite his diminutive 6'0" frame, won a slam dunk contest at the MaxPreps Holiday Classic right before the new year. This explosive athleticism is what drew multiple teams to offer Vassar a scholarship, including Illinois, DePaul, USC, and SMU. Vassar has a solid shooting stroke and a fearlessness in attacking the rim. The most important stat for Vassar, however, is his 1.5 assist to turnover ratio, which is better than Northwestern's current PG Dave Sobolewski's 1.3 ratio. Vassar will challenge for playing time at point guard right away along with fellow 2014 recruit, Indiana prep Bryant McIntosh.
The Wildcats aren't known for having many successes during recruiting season, but with the commitment of 6'6" small forward Victor Law this summer, the 66th best recruit in the country according to ESPN, the floodgates opened up for Northwestern. Coach Collins is a Chicago suburbs native and getting Law to stay close to home was a huge get. For the Wildcats to stay competitive in the B1G, re-tapping into the fertile Chicago high school basketball scene is imperative. Vassar, despite his current high school, is another Chicago kid that Collins got to stay close to home.