RECRUITING: Yusef Gray Jr. impressed by Ames, Iowa State visit

Iowa State had another 2026 prospect in town for an unofficial visit this weekend in Wisconsin guard Yusef Gray Jr.

The 6-foot-4, West Allis Central High School prospect came away from it humbled.

“The visit was great,” Gray Jr. said. “It was crazy. They were very welcoming. Even the walk-on players on the sidelines had great energy, supporting the players. It felt like they were actually on the team. It was really humbling.”

The high school sophomore has received interest thus far from Marquette, Northwestern, Cal, Nebraska, Bryant, UW Milwaukee, and Arkansas State so far in his recruitment and is one of five 2026 prospects that have visited since the start of September.

“I was on the sideline at practice and literally every single player came over and shook my hand, and introduced themselves to me,” Gray Jr. said. “That was a big deal to me – seeing college players that are really just humbled.”

Iowa State assistant coach J.R. Blount has been the primary recruiter with Gray Jr.

He’s came in on multiple occasions to see Gray Jr. in action and give him some guidance as he builds his game.

“He came down to watch me a couple of times, telling me what he liked about my game and things that I need to work on – stuff I can do to get stronger and really play at the next level,” Gray Jr. said.

Iowa State’s campus, academic and nutrition programs also stuck out to the Wisconsin guard.

“That’s a huge thing for me, because I want to be sure I’m seeing it off the court as well,” Gray Jr. said. “Really with the campus, this experience was a 10/10. The campus was great. Meeting all of the coaches, I felt comfortable. The campus felt humungous. It was a great experience.”

Overall, Gray Jr. will be looking to build his profile and his game over the next season until his classes recruiting window gets a bit closer.