The last time Vanderbilt scored a consensus five-star player, John Jenkins had a prolific career in Nashville. A third-team All-American as a senior, Jenkins was one of the truly elite shooters in college basketball during his reign with the Commodores, knocking down nearly 44 percent of his triples for his career.  Another five-star talent is now headed to Vanderbilt. Different players, but the impact could be just as great.

On Monday, the Commodores signed Brentwood (Tenn.) Academy point guard Darius Garland, one of the nation’s premiere floor generals. 

Since Jenkins left Nashville after his junior year, Vanderbilt, who went 25-12 during his final year, has just one 20-win campaign under its belt. Now with a cornerstone prospect in Garland, the tide could be turning. 

A player that makes everyone better around him, Garland is the straw that stirs the drink whenever he’s on the floor. Garland’s feel for the game is unparalleled in the 2018 class, always able to give the other four on the floor exactly what they need. When it’s time to run the show and get others involved, Garland surveys the floor with the best of them and creates tons of opportunities for his teammates. When it’s time to take over, Garland rarely seems to fail in clutch moments. 

Garland (6-2, 170) maybe doesn’t wow anybody with size or athleticism, but he’s as crafty and creative as they come with the ball in his possession. Garland possesses unreal ability to thread the needle in traffic. When he’s on the ball, it’s essentially on a string and he can get from point ‘A’ to point ‘B’ in a variety of ways. 

If you’re drafting point guards in the 2018 class, and you have to win one game, I don’t think Garland goes further than second. This past EYBL circuit, Garland averaged 16.8 points per game on 53.3 percent shooting, leading Bradley Beal Elite to a 13-3 regular season record. He also added 4.8 assists and 3.1 rebounds per outing. 

Garland chose Vanderbilt over other offers from Duke, Kentucky, Kansas, Indiana, UCLA, Louisville, Baylor, Florida, USC, Ohio State, and many more. He is Vanderbilt’s second commitment in 2018, joining Aaron Nesmith (Charleston, S.C.).