Nike Hoop Summit Roster Selection Puts Adam Miller on Top Tier
Adam Miller has been a force in Illinois high-school basketball for several years, and he is ready to move his talents to the national stage.
The 6-foot-3 guard from Chicago powerhouse Morgan Park High School was selected to the USA Nike Hoop Summit Team on Feb. 7, adding a new chapter to the burgeoning star’s compelling story. While Miller’s prep career has yet to close, the Nike Hoop Summit offers him a chance to take the court with the top high school seniors in the country, before they take their talents to the next level.
“I was playing a video game when I found out,” Miller said. “I was surprised and very happy that I was going to be part of this experience with my other brothers in the country and put on that USA uniform.”
With Morgan Park advancing to the Illinois High School Association 3A state basketball Tournament, Miller’s current focus remains with his Mustangs, who are in search of their second state title in his time with the team. Miller counts the 2018 state championship he helped Morgan Park win among the favorite memories of his young career.
“Moving up to Chicago was a big change,” he said, commenting on his move from Peoria’s Manual High School for his sophomore season. “Coach said, ‘You have a chance to win state if you do what you have to do.’ I did what I had to do, and we won state.”
Miller averaged 15 points per game for Morgan Park that season, meshing with his new team rather than being Mustangs’ lead horse.
“I moved back into a third option role, which is hard for a lot of players to do,” he said. “I gave 110 percent to that role and just tried to be the best me I could be.”
It did not take long for Miller to become the Mustangs’ No. 1 option, however. He was named Illinois Player of the Year in 2018-19 after recording 26.7 points, 7.3 rebounds and 5.4 assists per game. Rather than seek personal accolades, though, he holds onto his “anything for the team” mindset. It’s an attitude he seeks to bring to USA Basketball at the Nike Hoop Summit this April.
“I bring a lot of energy and do whatever the team needs,” he said. “I can play point guard or shooting guard, shooting or passing, whatever the team needs me to do, that’s what I bring.”
There’s been a basketball in Miller’s hand nearly as long as he’s been alive. From a young age, he could be found in the basement of his home taking shots at a small hoop, or out playing the game with friends until his mother, Andrea Garry, called him home.
“We’d be out there from sunup to sundown,” he said. “My whole family has played, so I always have, too. It’s like second nature — a different lifestyle.”
For Miller, the game is about more than the individual. He seeks to translate his skills to the benefit of the group as a whole, both teammates and supporters.
“I love everything about basketball,” he said. “It’s a way to connect with people. I wouldn’t be who I am today without basketball.”
That community mindset that drove Miller to commit to the University of Illinois to play college basketbaall. A highly coveted collegiate recruit that garnered interest from Arizona State University, the University of Arizona, the University of Louisville and the University of Kansas, among others, it was a desire to play for those that knew him best that steered him to the Fighting Illini.
“I feel like I’m a great player who can change any program, so why not do it at home?” he said. “I feel like I can give the best I can give for any school, so I should do it in Illinois where everyone I know can see me and the coaches know me best.”
Miller is optimistic and excited for his future, and he isn’t shy about his lofty goals — which include not just playing in the NBA, but one day earning a spot in the Hall of Fame.
“You never know how God is going to bless you, but I feel like basketball is my calling,” he said. “I want to write my name in the history books.”
While many of Miller’s goals remain in future, he looks forward to accomplishing at least one in the short term: a gold medal against international competition at the Nike Hoop Summit.
“We’re going to bring that gold home, and everyone is going to see that the 2020 class are winners,” he said. “Jalen (Green), Jalen (Suggs), Josh (Christopher), Caleb (Love), they’re all my brothers. I’m happy to be able to go out there together.”