NCB On The Trail: Basketball Recruiting

When recruit changes mind, chaos ensues 

September, 17, 2014
Sep 17
10:30
AM ET
On Sept. 4, Antonio Blakeney told ESPN.com’s Reggie Rankin, "I was very comfortable with the coaching staff," after pledging to attend the University of Louisville.

Two weeks later, he told Rankin, “I made a quick and emotional decision based on the wrong reasons," after decommitting from the Cardinal, before following up with a tweet that read, "I am still really considering Louisville. I like everything about there (sic) program, coaches and fans!!"

[+] EnlargeAntonio Blakeney
AP Photo/Gregory PayanAntonio Blakeney, ranked No. 14 in the ESPN 100, verbally committed to Louisville earlier this month only to decommit two weeks later.
Which, to those who parent the odd beast known as teenagers, sounds about right. Teens are as certain about their futures as they are the inner workings of nuclear physics.

The difference is, Blakeney is not your typical teen. He is the No. 14-rated player in the 2015 ESPN 100, and what should be his private, independent decision has ramifications from his home base in Florida throughout basketball offices across the country.

Decommitment is not even a word -- shows up underlined in red every time you type it. Yet it is very much a thing in college sports circles, where kids can and do renege on their verbal pledges.

The problem isn’t nearly as bad in hoops as it is in football. Sports Illustrated’s Luke Winn did a numbers crunch study this summer and found that, in 2013, only 11.8 percent of the basketball players he studied made multiple commitments, down from 12.4 in 2012.

Still, it happens. And when it does, it sends coaches into a tizzy.

Five new faces in the ESPN 100 

September, 15, 2014
Sep 15
10:00
AM ET
Last week we launched our updated ESPN 100 list for the senior class. We had some new faces on the list. These prospects entered this prestigious list because of their high-level performances, productivity and potential.

It’s an elite list to crack; it’s even harder stay on the list because of the stiff competition.

Here are five new faces in the ESPN 100.


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Weekly commitment update

September, 12, 2014
Sep 12
11:48
AM ET
The following is a list of commitments made to Division I schools from Sept. 5-11.

SEC
Texas A&M
D.J. Hogg SF
HT: 6-7 WT: 205
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 7
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 34

Missouri
Cullen VanLeer SG
HT: 6-4 WT: 195
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Ole Miss
Donte Fitzpatrick SF
HT: 6-5 WT: 175
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 28
Stars: 3

Vanderbilt
Djery Baptiste C
HT: 6-11 WT: 245
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 22
Stars: 4

Georgia
Tyree Crump SG
HT: 6-2 WT: 170
Class of 2016
Positional Rank: 13
Stars: 4

Jordan Harris SG
HT: 6-5 WT: 175
Class of 2016
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

ACC
Florida State
Dwayne Bacon SF
HT: 6-6 WT: 195
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 8
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 38

Malik Beasley SG
HT: 6-4 WT: 185
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 5
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 30

Boston College
Matt Milon SG
HT: 6-4 WT: 180
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 44
Stars: 3

Jerome Robinson SG
HT: 6-5 WT: 170
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Notre Dame
Rex Pflueger SG
HT: 6-5 WT: 180
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 39
Stars: 3

Big East
Marquette
Haanif Cheatham SG
HT: 6-5 WT: 175
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 22
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 79

Villanova
Jalen Brunson PG
HT: 6-1 WT: 180
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 3
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 23

Big Ten
Minnesota
Jonathan Nwankwo C
HT: 6-10 WT: 240
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 30
Stars: 4

Indiana
Juwan Morgan PF
HT: 6-8 WT: 215
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 27
Stars: 4

Pac 12
Arizona State
Jordan Washington C
HT: 6-8 WT: 255
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: Junior College

Oregon
Trevor Manuel PF
HT: 6-9 WT: 200
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 35
Stars: 4

Big 12
West Virginia
Esa Ahmad PF
HT: 6-8 WT: 218
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 8
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 42

Mountain West Conference
New Mexico
Mitchell Lightfoot PF
HT: 6-7 WT: 195
Class of 2016
Positional Rank: 17
Stars: 4

Utah State
Brock Miller SG
HT: 6-5 WT: 190
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: 3

Wyoming
Eric Turner SF
HT: 6-5 WT: 193
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: 3

Conference USA
UTEP
Christian Romine C
HT: 6-10 WT: 205
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Missouri Valley Conference
Indiana State
Bronson Kessinger SF
HT: 6-6 WT: 200
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Evaluation Pending

Missouri State
Zach Cameron-Chodes PF
HT: 6-9 WT: 190
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Loyola (IL)
Maurice Kirby C
HT: 6-9 WT: 230
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: Junior College

MAC
Northern Illinois
Levi Bradley SF
HT: 6-5 WT: 170
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Jaylen Key PF
HT: 6-6 WT: 210
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Laytwan Porter PG
HT: 6-0
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Western Michigan
Josh Davis SG
HT: 6-5 WT: 175
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Bowling Green
Jamir Andrews SG
HT: 6-3 WT: 195
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: Junior College

Southern Conference
Mercer
Ethan Stair SG
HT: 6-5 WT: 195
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Western Carolina
Elijah Pughsley PG
HT: 6-1 WT: 175
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Patriot League
Lehigh
Matt Holba SF
HT: 6-7 WT: 200
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Colgate
Dana Batt PF
HT: 6-9 WT: 210
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Navy
Matt Cullen SG
HT: 6-2 WT: 160
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Colonial Athletic Conference
UNC-Wilmington
Devontae Cacok PF
HT: 6-6
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Williams & Mary
Hunter Seacat PF
HT: 6-9 WT: 208
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Drexel
Terrell Allen PG
HT: 6-2 WT: 185
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

MAAC
Iona
Kai Mitchell PF
HT: 6-5 WT: 250
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Ricky McGill PG
HT: 6-1 WT: 165
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Big West
UC-Davis
Rogers Printup SF
HT: 6-4 WT: 195
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: 2

Sun Belt
Appalachian State
Emarius Logan PG
HT: 6-2 WT: 180
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Arkansas-Little Rock
Tyson Batiste SG
HT: 6-2
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Big South
Radford
Edward Polite SG
HT: 6-4 WT: 185
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Presbyterian
Austin Venable PF
HT: 6-7 WT: 240
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Ohio Valley Conference
Eastern Illinois
Casey Teson PG
HT: 6-1
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Northeast Conference
Robert Morris
Isaiah Still SG
HT: 6-6
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Summit League
Oral Roberts
Javan White PF
HT: 6-8 WT: 200
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Scout's Take: No. 41 Ahmad picks WVU 

September, 10, 2014
Sep 10
4:08
PM ET
West Virginia scored a big commitment on Wednesday from forward Esa Ahmad, landing their highest remaining target in the Class of 2015. Ahmad -- the No. 41 player in the ESPN 100 -- had previously named a top five of Maryland, Ohio State, Oregon, West Virginia and Wisconsin.


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Scout's Take: D.J. Hogg picks Aggies 

September, 7, 2014
Sep 7
9:25
PM ET
ESPN 100 SF D.J. Hogg was on his official visit to Texas A&M this weekend and made his commitment to the Aggies on Sunday. He chose A&M over Baylor, UCLA, Texas, Oklahoma State and Arizona. Let's take a look at Hogg in greater detail:


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Scout's Take: Bacon to Florida State 

September, 5, 2014
Sep 5
10:15
PM ET
ESPN 100 SF Dwayne Bacon committed to Florida State and head coach Leonard Hamilton while on his official visit Friday. The No. 40 overall player in the Class of 2015 picked the Seminoles over offers from USC, Tennessee, Oklahoma State, SMU and South Florida among others.

Let's break down what Bacon will bring to Tallahassee.


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Scout's Take: Beasley to Florida State 

September, 5, 2014
Sep 5
10:00
PM ET
ESPN 100 No. 51 recruit Malik Beasley, one of the better scoring guards in the senior class, made a verbal commitment to Florida State on his official visit Friday. He was planning on visits to Georgia, Virginia Commonwealth, Wake Forest and St. John's as well.

Let's take a look at what this means for the Seminoles.


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Weekly commitment update

September, 5, 2014
Sep 5
9:14
AM ET
The following is a list of commitments made to Division I schools from Aug. 29-Sept. 4.

Pac-12
Oregon State
Tres Tinkle SF
HT: 6-7 WT: 215
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 9
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 45

Stephen Thompson Jr. SG
HT: 6-4 WT: 165
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 20
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 55

Derrick Bruce PG
HT: 6-3 WT: 155
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: Post Grad

Big Ten
Nebraska
Glynn Watson PG
HT: 5-11 WT: 160
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: 12
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 96

Rutgers
Corey Sanders PG
HT: 6-2 WT: 170
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 4
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 32

Big 12
Kansas State
Dean Wade PF
HT: 6-8 WT: 215
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

SEC
Tennessee
Shembari Phillips SG
HT: 6-4 WT: 185
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Admiral Schofield SF
HT: 6-5 WT: 220
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Auburn
New Williams SG
HT: 6-2 WT: 165
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: 3

Big East Conference
Providence
Tyree Chambers PG
HT: 6-2
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: Europe

American Athletic Conference
East Carolina
Kentrell Barkley SF
HT: 6-5
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

ACC
Virginia
Ty Jerome PG
HT: 6-3 WT: 180
Class of 2016
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: 3

Louisville
Antonio Blakeney SG
HT: 6-4 WT: 170
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 3
Stars: 5
ESPN 100: 16

Conference USA
Western Kentucky
Frederick Edmond SG
HT: 6-4 WT: 190
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: Junior College

Missouri Valley Conference
Wichita State
Landry Shamet SG
HT: 6-4 WT: 180
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

MAC
Bowling Green
Jalone Friday PF
HT: 6-8 WT: 220
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Kent State
Jaylin Walker SG
HT: 6-2 WT: 180
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

WAC
Seattle
Malik Montoya SG
HT: 6-2
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Ohio Valley Conference
Southeast Missouri State
Robby Dosier SG
HT: 6-4 WT: 180
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

America East
UMass - Lowell
Keith Hayes PG
HT: 5-10
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Sun Belt Conference
Louisiana - Monroe
Marcus Washington SG
HT: 6-2 WT: 180
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: Junior College

Georgia State
Malik Benlevi SF
HT: 6-5
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Patriot League
Lafayette
Sam Dunkum C
HT: 6-11 WT: 225
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Army
Dylan Hamlin C
HT: 6-11 WT: 230
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Will Culliton SG
HT: 6-3
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Big South Conference
Winthrop
Adam Pickett PG
HT: 6-1 WT: 175
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Bjorn Broman PG
HT: 6-0
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Atlantic Sun Conference
Northern Kentucky
Brennan Gillis SF
HT: 6-6 WT: 185
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Ivy League
Cornell
Troy Whiteside SG
HT: 6-4 WT: 175
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

MAAC
Quinnipiac
Aaron Robinson SG
HT: 6-4
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Andrew Robinson SG
HT: 6-4
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Southland Conference
Lamar
Terrance Hubby PF
HT: 6-5
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Big Sky Conference
Eastern Washington
Jesse Hunt PF
HT: 6-6 WT: 205
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Weber State
Riley Court SF
HT: 6-4 WT: 190
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Southern Utah
Nicholas Pete SF
HT: 6-7 WT: 185
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: 2

Northern Arizona
Corey Brown PF
HT: 6-8
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Southern Conference
Mercer
Cory Kilby SF
HT: 6-7
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Independent
N.J.I.T.
Reilly Walsh SG
HT: 6-3
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Northeast Conference
Central Connecticut State
Jahlil Nails SF
HT: 6-5
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Robert Morris
Matty McConnell PG
HT: 6-1
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending
Point guard Corey Sanders, the No. 32 player in the 2015 ESPN 100, has committed to new Big Ten member Rutgers. Sanders also had offers from Tennessee, South Florida, DePaul and Central Florida, which he was previously committed to until October 2013. He gives Scarlet Knights coach Eddie Jordan his most highly ranked player to date.

Let's break down what Sanders will bring to the Scarlet Knights:


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Scout's Take: Glynn Watson to Nebraska 

September, 1, 2014
Sep 1
12:17
PM ET

ESPN 100 point guard Glynn Watson committed to Nebraska and coach Tim Miles over Creighton after taking an official visit to Lincoln this past weekend. Watson also had offers from Maryland, Tennessee, Purdue and West Virginia. Here's what he will bring to the Cornhuskers:


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Center Diamond Stone, ranked fourth in the ESPN 100 for the Class of 2015, has narrowed his list of schools to five.


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ESPN 100 small forward Danjel Purifoy committed to Auburn and head coach Bruce Pearl on Friday night, announcing his decision on ESPN3 during the dunk contest for the Under Amour Elite 24 game in New York.


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Texas A&M head coach Billy Kennedy scored a huge commitment Friday morning as Tyler Davis, the No. 21-ranked prospect overall and No. 6 center in the 2015 ESPN 100, committed to the Aggies over the likes of Kansas, Arizona, Baylor and Texas, among others.


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Weekly commitment update

August, 22, 2014
Aug 22
8:23
AM ET
The following is a list of commitments made to Division I schools from Aug. 16-22

ACC
Florida State
Terance Mann SG
HT: 6-5 WT: 175
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 29
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 76

SEC
Arkansas
Jimmy Whitt SG
HT: 6-3 WT: 170
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 21
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 63

Missouri
Kevin Puryear PF
HT: 6-7
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Florida
Noah Dickerson PF
HT: 6-8 WT: 237
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 11
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 65

Atlantic 10
Virginia Commonwealth
Kenny Williams SG
HT: 6-3 WT: 175
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 34
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 82

Richmond
Julius Johnson SG
HT: 6-3 WT: 185
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Big 10
Indiana
Emmitt Holt PF
HT: 6-6 WT: 220
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Pac 12
Oregon
Dillon Brooks SF
HT: 6-7 WT: 215
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: 4

UCLA
Prince Ali SG
HT: 6-4 WT: 180
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 14
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 44

Nebraska
Aguek Arop SG
HT: 6-4 WT: 175
Class of 2017
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Ivy League
Princeton
Devin Cannady PG
HT: 6-0 WT: 170
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

America East
Vermont
Josh Speidel C
HT: 6-7 WT: 180
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 28
Stars: 3

UMass Lowell
Ryan Jones PG
HT: 6-3 WT: 160
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

MAAC
Canisius
Isiaiah Gurley SG
HT: 6-3
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Southland Conference
Lamar
Nick Garth PG
HT: 6-0 WT: 160
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Big South
UNC-Asheville
Jack Costigan SG
HT: 6-3 WT: 180
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Big Sky
Montana
Jared Samuelson SF
HT: 6-7
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

 
ESPN 100 guard Jimmy Whitt made a verbal commitment to Arkansas on Tuesday night. The 63rd-ranked prospect in the country chose the Razorbacks over Missouri, Illinois, SMU, and Marquette and announced his decision at a news conference from Hickman High School.


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