Makur Maker (born 4 November 2000) is a Kenyan-Australian basketball player. A consensus five-star recruit, he committed to play college basketball for Howard, becoming the highest-ranked player to ever commit to a historically black college or university (HBCU). Born in Nairobi, Kenya, Maker grew up in Perth, Australia before playing high school basketball in North America. He is the cousin of basketball players Thon and Matur Maker.
Maker was born in Nairobi, Kenya and immigrated to Perth, Australia when he was one year old. He is also of South Sudanese decent. Before focusing on basketball, he mainly took interest in football as a striker and often played beach soccer with his friends. Maker played for Quinns Football club alongside his older brothers. Maker attended St. Andrews Catholic Primary School and joined Irene McCormack Catholic College for high school. He was drawn to basketball in part because of his exceptional height.
High school career
In 2015, Maker moved to the United States and enrolled for his freshman year at Chaminade College Preparatory School in West Hills, Los Angeles. As a result, he was forced to live away from his family for many years. As a freshman, Maker averaged 9.5 points, 8.2 rebounds and 2.5 blocks per game. In 2016, he transferred to The Tech Academy, a prep school in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, and played basketball for Prolific Prep North. He was drawn to the program by his cousins, basketball players Thon and Matur Maker. His cousins also brought him under the guidance of Ed Smith, a coach who had helped direct them through their own basketball careers. Maker joined the basketball team with Matur and played in the National Preparatory Association. In his next year, The Tech Academy closed and he was homeschooled. Maker suffered a foot injury that sidelined him for the 2017–18 season.
In the summer of 2018, he transferred to Orange Lutheran High School in Orange, California. As a junior, he earned All-Trinity League first team and Orange County Register All-County second team honors. Maker faced eligibility questions entering his senior season, because he had already exhausted his eight semesters of eligibility. Instead of seeking a waiver from the California Interscholastic Federation to continue playing for Orange Lutheran, he transferred to Pacific Academy, a prep school in Irvine, California, and continued his career with the affiliated program, Center of International Basketball Academy. On October 17, 2019, it was announced that he had submitted paperwork to explore his eligibility for the 2020 NBA draft. On 18 December, Maker transferred to Hillcrest Prep in Phoenix, Arizona for the remainder of the season. On 25 April 2020, he declared for the 2020 NBA draft. Despite finishing two credits short of high school graduation, Maker was granted eligibility by the NBA.
Maker was a consensus five-star recruit and one of the top centers in the 2020 recruiting class, according to major recruiting services. On 3 July 2020, he committed to play college basketball for Howard over offers from UCLA, Kentucky and Memphis. He became the highest-ranked recruit to commit to a historically black college or university (HBCU) in the modern recruiting era. Maker made the decision in part to encourage future prospects to play for HBCU programs.
|Name||Hometown||High school / college||Height||Weight||Commit date|
|Orange, CA||Hillcrest Prep Academy (AZ)||6 ft 11 in (2.11 m)||235 lb (107 kg)||Jul 3, 2020|
|Overall recruiting rankings: Rivals: 18 247Sports: 18 ESPN: 16|
National team career
Maker is a dual citizen and is eligible to represent Australia or Kenya in FIBA competitions. In February 2019, he stated that he would play for Australia internationally. Maker made himself available to represent Australia at the 2019 FIBA Under-19 Basketball World Cup but was not selected in the final squad.
Maker is a cousin of NBA player Thon Maker and NBA G League player Matur Maker. He has six brothers and one sister. Maker descends from the Dinka people in South Sudan. His guardian is Liberian-born basketball coach Ed Smith, who is the same guardian as his cousins Thon and Matur.