Jenkins Joins Utah Men's Basketball
SALT LAKE CITY – Utah head men's basketball coach Craig Smith continues to assemble his roster for the 2021-22 season as he adds UNLV transfer David Jenkins Jr. for the upcoming season.
"We are thrilled to announce that David Jenkins Jr. will be joining the Runnin' Utes basketball family!" said Smith. "David comes to us with a wide range of experience in the winning column, having started in the NCAA Tournament his freshman year. As we build our culture, it is important to have young men that have a passion and desire to strengthen and connect our Utah brand. David made it very clear to us on his commitment to do just that."
The Tacoma, Wash., native was second in scoring at UNLV last season, averaging 14.8 points, 2.4 rebounds and 1.6 assists while starting in 20-of-27 games in his first season on the court. The 6-2 guard shot .399 from the field to go with a .409 shooting clip from 3-point range and .773 from the free throw line. In Mountain West Conference action, Jenkins Jr. averaged 15.1 points, 2.7 rebounds and 1.6 assists with a .416 shooting clip – including .407 from deep.
Smith is no stranger to Jenkins Jr., who coached against him three times in 2020-21 with Jenkins Jr. averaging 17.3 points, 3.0 rebounds and 2.3 assists – including a 33-point game against the Utah State where he went 5-of-7 from long range. In addition, Jenkins will have a familiar on the bench with DeMarlo Slocum having coached at UNLV the past two seasons.
"David has proven over the past four years to be one of college basketball's most dynamic scorers," Smith mentioned. "But most importantly, David is a fine young man that will represent our Utah basketball community at a championship level!"
He played his first two collegiate season at South Dakota State where he averaged 16.1 points, 3.2 rebounds and 1.6 assists to go with a .432 shooting clip as a freshman. He started in 22-of-35 games that season and was named the Summit League Freshman of the Year and selected to the all-newcomer team as well. Jenkins Jr. also set the freshman scoring record for the Jackrabbits, scoring 565 points and was the eighth-highest scorer freshmen in the NCAA Division I at 16.1 points per game. He was named to the all-tournament team after leading the Jackrabbits the conference tournament title to their fifth NCAA Tournament appearance that year and finished 20-13 overall.
Jenkins Jr. had an even better sophomore season, averaging 19.7 points, 3.4 rebounds and 1.5 assists. In addition, he also shot .458 from the floor and .453 from 3-point land while knocking down a single-season record 112 threes. For his efforts, he earned the NABC All-District XII Second-Team honors and First-Team All-Summit League honors. Jenkins Jr. also set a new career-high in scoring that season, dropping a 35 spot against Memphis on the road. In addition, he also racked up two Summit Player of the Week Honors and a CBS Sports/USBWA National Freshman of the Week award. The dynamic guard finished the season with 1,194 career points, which was 25th all-time in scoring at South Dakota State.
His prep career was just as prolific, leaving Wilson Senior High School as the school's all-time leading scorer with 2,000 points. While at WSHS, he averaged 28.0 points and set the single-season record while also dropped two 50-point games. Not short of any accolades, Jenkins Jr. collected first-team all-state, all-area, all-county and all-city honors to go with his MVP award after leading the Rams to the state championship game his senior year.