Top-150 junior Tristian Ford talks big summer, heightened recruitment and more

Then undersized guard Tristian Ford walked into last year's Midwest HSA in Chicago largely unknown, but went on to shoot the lights out and land in the All-Star game. Fast forward a year, he's hit a growth spurt and put together a massive spring and summer with Mac Irvin.

Now 6-4, the pieces began to materialize this summer for Ford. In 22 games in the EYBL with Mac Irvin, he put up 11 points, 3.5 assists, 4 rebounds and a steal per game on 46% from the field, 40% from beyond the arc and 94% from the line. A prototypical combo-guard with elite touch, and that resonated with coaches. 

Ford said, "Going into the summer, I really didn't much going on with recruiting. Now, I'm talking to a bunch of different coaches and building some good relationships."

Long been gifted as a shooter and space creator, but the evolution physically has played a big part in his rise into 2025's Top-150. Looking ahead, he's looking to prove he can be a plus on the other end of the floor as well.

"I'm lifting twice a day, almost everyday now. From talking to coaches, they want to see more from me as a defender. Now that I have some length and more athleticism, I'm trying to showcase that every game."

Since the spring, Arizona State, Texas A&M, Toledo, Northern Illinois, Central Michigan, Eastern Illinois and Bryant have come in with offers. NIU and CMU, along with Richmond and Marquette, have been in touch with Ford the most.

"They've just been telling me that they love my potential on both ends of the floor. Creating those relationships has been great. I want to go to a program that gets on me and one that'll get the most out of me at the end of the day" he said.

Inching towards the tip of his junior campaign with Chi Prep (IL), Ford's stock should continue to surge. The Chicago native pops with his raw talent and is progressing at a very promising clip. 

In terms of the next steps in his development, he said, "I'm working a ton on my reads out of ball screens. Slowing the game down, not getting bumped off my lines when I'm driving and just staying consistent as a defender."

Ford had a fantastic few months in the EYBL, but still isn't being widely discussed on the national stage. As 2025's steadily slide into the spotlight, I'd expect Ford to continue to emerge on the Grind Session this winter.




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