Wednesday, September 18, 2013
Top 10 schools with recruiting momentum
By Dave Telep
The recruiting game is predicated on momentum. Win a title, and you get a bump with recruits. Put a dearth of guys in the NBA, and the players notice. The last few weeks we've looked at the programs that signed the most Top 100 players and most Top 25 players in past five seasons. This time around, we went with momentum.
By looking at the current senior high school class (2014) and who signed last year (2013), we were able to figure out which programs are the hottest in terms of their appeal to recruits. Obviously, this number is dynamic, since not all ESPN 100 members in the Class of 2014 have committed.
Most Top 100 players 2013-14
Josh Pastner replaced John Calipari at Memphis and picked up right where Coach Cal left off.
1. Kentucky (8 Top 100 recruits): Each week, no matter how we look at the lists, Kentucky's sheer volume of top-shelf recruits stands out. Easily the most consistent recruiting program of the last five years.
2. Memphis (6): One gets the feeling Memphis would be a good answer to a trivia question. Don't let Josh Pastner fool you. He's getting players to the program John Calipari constructed before his exit.
3. Arizona (5): The Wildcats are firmly established as a national recruiting powerhouse. Sean Miller set about re-stocking the cupboard, and Arizona remains a contender to expand this number with more in the Class of 2014.
4. North Carolina (5): North Carolina had a nice 2013 effort followed up by one of Roy Williams' masterpieces in 2014.
5. NC State (5): Since Mark Gottfried took over, we've seen NC State pop up onto the lists of more recruits, both regionally and nationally, and this number is proof that the message has been received.
6. Ohio State (5): Thad Matta already has one more Top 100 player in the 2014 class than he did last year.
7. Syracuse (5): Sticking to their plan to dominate from the northeast through Philadelphia, Jim Boeheim's Orange remains one of the more popular destinations for upper-tier players.
8. Kansas (5): No one is better poised to make a run at Kentucky's eight Top 100 recruits in the last two years than Kansas. The Jayhawks don't have a 2014 commitment but are coming off a year in which Bill Self signed five.
9. Louisville (4.5): Technically, the Cardinals have only four Top 100 commits the last two years, but Terry Rozier was in the 2012 ESPN 100 before taking a post-grad year and joining the Cardinals with the 2013 group. Plus, junior college transfer Chris Jones was a Top 50 player in 2011 but only joined Louisville this year. Essentially, that's how we broke the tie with the other programs that added four each.
10. 10-way tie (4): Rounding out Telep's Top 10 are 10 programs that each added four Top 100 players from 2013-14: Alabama, Arkansas, Duke, Florida, Georgetown, Illinois, Indiana, Marquette, Maryland, Villanova.