Emoni Bates, widely considered the best high school prospect in more than a decade, announced his commitment to Michigan State on Monday.
Bates also announced his plans for his final two years of high school; he will attend a new prep school that his father, Elgin, is opening this fall.
"Coach [Tom] Izzo and coach [Mike] Garland and that entire MSU staff has been showing love since his seventh grade year. They've been very consistent," Elgin Bates told ESPN. "They really have a genuine care for him and the family. They care for him, not only as a player, but as a person. That's really big for us as a family and for him as a player."
Despite being a potentially generational prospect, Michigan State was the only school to consistently recruit Bates during his high school career. Izzo was the only high-major head coach to really pursue Bates, going to his games and staying in contact. June 15 was the first day college coaches could call rising high school juniors — and the Spartans were the only program to reach out to Bates.
"They get all my respect, really," Emoni Bates said. "I love how they coach, Coach Izzo, I like how they focus on defense more than offense. That's a big key in basketball and people don't understand that. On and off the court, he has passion. He's just an amazing guy, overall."
Bates is the first five-star prospect to commit to Michigan State since Jaren Jackson in 2017, and is the first No. 1 prospect to commit to the Spartans since the ESPN recruiting database started in 2007.