The number one recruit in the 2024 class, Naasir Cunningham has signed with Overtime Elite but will maintain his college eligibility. While his graduation year is still a few years away this is the highest-ranked recruit that Overtime has signed and could be a defining signing that proves the new program is a serious competitor to college basketball. That being said Cunningham did keep his college eligibility intact and left the option open to go to school. He currently holds offers from the Duke Blue Devils, UCLA Bruins, Kansas Jayhawks, and a few other programs.
Interesting development, and shows difference between pay-for-play and NIL. High school basketball star Naasir Cunningham is turning pro with Overtime Elite, but forgoing salary and other compensation to preserve NCAA eligibility. He can still make money via endorsement deals. https://t.co/9rXJ1gcMUj
— Michael McCann (@McCannSportsLaw) April 25, 2022
Between Overtime Elite and NIL deals, it is likely five-star recruits begin committing or signing early. Naasir Cunningham is doing something fairly unique and forgoing a salary so he can maintain his college eligibility. Now it is possible that he heads to college with unique experience under his belt. While he was already a top choice for the 2025 NBA Draft, this could make him an even more interesting prospect.
— SLAM HS Hoops (@SLAM_HS) September 16, 2021
Naasir Cunningham is a top high school prospect and still has time to work on his game and get better. There are still a few years before he will be old enough to head to college or the NBA and rules could change between now and then. His journey to pro basketball will be interesting to watch as the landscape of college and pro basketball changes with new rules.