basketball Edit

Young wing AJ Swinton sees his game, recruitment growing

AJ Swinton
AJ Swinton

Class of 2024 wing AJ Swinton is a name for high school basketball fans to keep in mind over the next couple of years. He debuted at 49 in the recently expanded Rivals rankings for the sophomore class, and has much more room to grow.

Swinton took unofficial visits to Xavier and Ohio State back in early February and is also hearing from a plethora of other schools as well.


MORE PLAYER UPDATES: Gavin Griffiths | Wesley Tubbs

2022 Rankings: Rivals150 | Team | Position

2023 Rankings: Rivals150

2024 Rankings: Top 40




Xavier: “I liked it a lot. There was high energy ... and you could really see that the coaching staff and atmosphere was great. It definitely didn’t disappoint for it being a smaller school. I had a good time listening to what the coaching staff had to say and got to speak with some of the players. The staff definitely has a lot of energy.”

Ohio State: “My visit there was very interesting. They played the University of Maryland when I was there. Their campus, I think it’s like (one of the) top 10 biggest campuses? Their facilities are top of the line. The players and coaches were very welcoming, and I loved seeing coach (Chris) Holtmann’s style of play. He loves pushing the ball and that’s kind of how I play. The way they execute and stretch out the defense really stuck out to me.”

Notre Dame: “I’ve had an early connection with them. Back when I shadowed there in eighth grade, they had an open period during their practice and I got to speak to the head coach and assistant coach. I also got to speak to their staff during Peach Jam last summer. They’ve been showing interest very early and showing that they’re looking out for me. I spoke to them again during the live period and our connection started to grow a little more.”

Villanova: “I went up to their Midnight Madness during last year. I got invited out there and it was a very fun atmosphere. They had Midnight Madness and a celebration up there that night. I know Justin Moore from Dematha that goes there, and I know Brandon Slater as well. I also got to speak to Collin Gillespie.”

Virginia Tech: “My former coach, coach (Mike) Jones, is now the associate head coach there. Ever since he got on campus, I was one of the first names he brought up to the other coaches. He emphasized how the way I play, the way I play defense, and my length is exactly what they’re looking for. He wanted to get me on campus and give me a tour right away. I think I was the first sophomore that he offered if I’m not mistaken, and that meant a lot to me.”

Maryland: “You know, they’re my hometown school. I’ve had a lot of family members attend Maryland. My old coach was part of the 2002 national championship team, Byron Mouton. He coached me, so he could put in a good word for me.”

Michigan:Hunter Dickinson, he put in a good word for me, as well as Terrance Williams II. One of my friends plays football up there as well and tries to put in a good word for me. It’s nothing too major with Michigan right now.”

On new schools showing interest:UConn, Louisville and Marquette.”


It’s still quite early in the recruiting process for Swinton, but he has early offers from Howard, George Mason, Virginia Tech, Georgetown and Maryland. The 6-foot-6 wing will at least double that amount during the live periods in the coming months.

Virginia Tech looks promising early as his first Power Five offer, which happens to come from a former coach. Dematha senior Rodney Rice is signed with Virginia Tech as well, so there’s familiarity there. Swinton is one of the most active defenders in the 2024 class, and the continued development of his offensive game will be key moving forward.