NCB On The Trail: Texas Longhorns

video Myles Turner, the No. 2 player in the 2014 ESPN 100, committed to Texas on Wednesday over the likes of Kansas, Duke, Oklahoma State and Texas A&M. The 7-foot, 240-pound center gives the Longhorns the top available senior, a huge in-state prize and an immediate-impact player.

video Want to ask ESPN RecruitingNation national recruiting director Paul Biancardi a question about basketball recruiting? Tweet it to @PaulBiancardi using the hashtag #AskCoachB.
I don't believe Jabari Parker's decision on whether to turn pro has any bearing at all on the college decision of ESPN 100 No. 2 overall prospect Myles Turner.

Turner wanted to finish taking his visits and then try to figure out what his best option would be. He is done with visits; now it’s time for him to weigh all the pros and the cons. He is looking for a situation where he has a strong relationship with the head coach and the overall chemistry of the team. Furthermore, he wants a coach who has proven track record developing his players over the course of a year or over time, and preparing them for the next level will be important.

Whether Parker stays at Duke or declares for the NBA draft won't affect Turner's decision. His list of schools is still the same: Arizona, Duke, Oklahoma State, Ohio State, Texas, SMU and Texas A&M. Look for him to make his decision sometime after the Jordan Brand Classic game, which is at 7 p.m. ET Friday on ESPN2.

Roundtable: ESPN 100 commit predictions 

April, 15, 2014
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The ESPN 100 has just three remaining uncommitted prospects, and the competition remains furious for their services.

Myles Turner, No. 2 in the ESPN 100, leads the way, followed by No. 94 Elijah Stewart, who was released from his letter of intent to Loyola Marymount following the firing of coach Max Good, and No. 98 Josh Cunningham.

Devonte Graham wasn’t ESPN 100 eligible by virtue of his post-graduate status, but there is no denying he is a wanted man after receiving his release from Appalachian State. He will take official visits to Kansas and North Carolina State while also considering Virginia, Virginia Tech, Xavier and Providence.

So where are these remaining four prospects headed? No one knows for sure just yet, but here are a few educated guesses:


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Recruit and return: Texas 

March, 22, 2014
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To return to the NCAA tournament, a team needs contributions from both returning players and incoming recruits. Here's a look at Texas and its chances of dancing again in 2015.

Quick references:
2013-14 roster
2014 recruiting

Possible 2014-15 starting five:
G Isaiah Taylor
G Javan Felix
G Demarcus Holland
PF Jonathan Holmes
C Cameron Ridley


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The recruitment of Myles Turner is heating up.

[+] EnlargeMyles Turner
Kelly Kline/Under ArmourMyles Turner is the biggest name left on the 2014 recruiting board.
As the second-ranked prospect and best available player left in the ESPN 100, Turner has his choice of the most prestigious programs in the country, and he’s seen several of them in person in recent weeks.

Turner took an official visit to Duke last weekend to take in its victory over North Carolina and was at Kansas a few days earlier. Having previously taken official visits to Ohio State and Oklahoma State, he’ll save his fifth and final visit for Texas, but also might still take an unofficial trip to Kentucky before making his decision.

Turner is scheduled to participate in the McDonald’s All-American Game, Jordan Brand Classic and Nike Hoop Summit this spring, where he’ll play alongside several potential future teammates. With that in mind, here’s a breakdown of where he might fit in best, taking into consideration both each program’s likely personnel as well as their typical style of play:


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Want to ask ESPN RecruitingNation national recruiting director Paul Biancardi a question about basketball recruiting? Tweet it to @PaulBiancardi using the hashtag #AskCoachB.
Myles Turner has taken official visits so far to Ohio State, Oklahoma State, Kansas and Duke. He has been saying for a while his last visit will be to Texas.

I believe Kansas, with all of its prior success with big men under Bill Self, is being seriously considered. It's hard to imagine that Joel Embiid will stay in college with his progress and potential.

In terms of playing together, it would be easy as Turner can play in the high post, which is more of his natural position.

Embiid would stay more in the paint with his back to the basket. I will tell you this from witnessing Embiid in the past: He can shoot the ball better than the public knows, and that means if he goes to the high post, Turner can slide inside at anytime.

If Embiid stays at Kansas, the house will be a little more crowded with Cliff Alexander, Perry Ellis, Hunter Mickelson and Landen Lucas. It's a problem Self would certainly embrace.

#AskCoachB: How Turner helps Texas

February, 25, 2014
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Want to ask ESPN RecruitingNation national recruiting director Paul Biancardi a question about basketball recruiting? Tweet it to @PaulBiancardi using the hashtag #AskCoachB.

Myles Turner is the hot topic of conversation as the elite big man can name his final destination.

Texas is having an outstanding season under Rick Barnes, and he is one of the favorites for Big 12 coach of the year. The Longhorns (20-7) are ranked No. 24 in the AP poll and are in third place in the Big 12 after a down 2012-13 season. They now have won more games overall and in the league than last season.

This is an extremely young team, with no seniors, and the Longhorns have four players averaging double-figure points. It’s a well-balanced team with weapons everywhere. They have leadership, scoring and 3-point shooting from junior Jonathan Holmes, a true center in Cameron Ridley, who might be the most improved player in the league, and one of the conference’s best freshmen in PG Isaiah Taylor, who is averaging 12.8 points and 3.8 assists per game. Add in sophomore guard Javan Felix and you have a team of battle-tested, proven winners who keep improving.

If Turner picks Texas, with its entire roster returning, the Longhorns could easily be a preseason top-10 team next season. Don't forget that Turner has told the Texas staff that Austin will be his last official visit.
video
The recruiting process for Myles Turner (Bedford, Texas/Trinity), the nation’s No. 2 overall prospect, is starting to pick up, as the McDonald's All American prepares to make a decision sometime during the spring/late signing period.

Turner has officially visited Ohio State and Oklahoma State already and scheduled an official visit to Duke for March 8, his father, David Turner, confirmed via text.

Turner will also unofficially visit in-state Texas A&M this weekend and has promised the Texas Longhorns the final official visit before making a final decision.

With Ohio State, Oklahoma State in the books, Duke scheduled and Texas promised the final visit, one official visit is still to be determined. Turner still has Kansas, Arizona, Kentucky and SMU fighting to host that trip, if Turner decides to use it.

Turner will bring a terrific face-up game along with excellent skill and tremendous shot blocking ability to the program he selects.
Want to ask ESPN RecruitingNation national recruiting director Paul Biancardi a question about basketball recruiting? Tweet it to @PaulBiancardi using the hashtag #AskCoachB.



It's still early as Myles Turner (Bedford, Texas/Trinity) has only been to Ohio State for an official visit. Right now he is concentrating on his senior season and winning a state championship. He plans on taking an official visit to Oklahoma State, but whether it will be during or after his season is still undetermined. He has been to Austin, Texas, several times unofficially to check out the Longhorns.

When you look at all the schools involved -- Arizona, Duke, Kansas, Kentucky, Ohio State, Oklahoma State and Texas -- it’s obvious that this is going to be an absolute big-time recruiting battle for the nation’s No. 2 player. One of the biggest questions in his recruiting process is whether Turner wants to stay close to home. If so, that increases the chances for the Cowboys as well as the Longhorns. It's too early to give a percentage guess, but knowing he wants to and plans to visit Oklahoma State is very encouraging if you’re a Cowboys fan.
HOUSTON -- I caught up with ESPN 100 No. 2 overall Myles Turner (Euless, Texas/Trinity) on Saturday in Houston before his game against ESPN 100 No. 14 Justise Winslow (Houston/St. John’s) at the Fonde Hall of Fame games to get a recruiting update and see how the season was going.

Turner, the top uncommitted/unsigned player in the land, is considering Oklahoma State, Texas, Ohio State, Duke, Kentucky, Arizona and Kansas. The center has officially visited only Ohio State and had to cancel an official visit to Oklahoma State several weeks ago because of weather.


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Possible domino effect for top four 

October, 18, 2013
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Jahlil Okafor, Tyus JonesESPN, Icon SMIThe decisions of Jahlil Okafor and Tyus Jones -- who might be a tandem in college -- will have a likely ripple effect among other top prospects.
Many times in recruiting, one player's choices directly affects another. Players and coaches all have a plan when they start the recruiting process, but that plan can quickly change. Let's take a look at a few possible scenarios that could take place among the top four prospects in the ESPN 100. The only thing I base this on is my experience of a college coach and knowledge of how quickly things can change.

Let's have a little fun with these possible recruiting domino effects:

For Jahlil Okafor and Tyus Jones: I believe that Kansas and Duke are the major players here. Both are visiting Kansas this weekend and Duke next weekend, along with Justise Winslow, who will be on the trip to Durham only. Okafor and Jones could go to Kansas and Duke together. They also could play together at Baylor, another place they have already visited together. But that would be the biggest stretch of the three schools.

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USA developmental team camp recap 

October, 6, 2013
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- The USA Basketball Developmental National Team minicamp featured some of the nation's best high school talent representing the classes of 2014, 2015 and 2016. Head coach Don Showalter and his staff put the players through numerous intense and competitive drills, controlled scrimmages and game situations in this four-workout, two-day minicamp.

Note: ESPN 100 No. 1 overall player Jahlil Okafor didn't play on Day 1 after rolling his ankle during a one-on-one in the post drill.

Here are a few players who were impressive this weekend from the ESPN 100, 60 and 25 rankings.

ESPN 100 Standouts

Best Motor
Myles Turner (Bedford, Texas/Trinity)
C, 6-foot-11, 225 pounds
Considering: Kansas, Ohio State, Texas, Duke, Arizona, Kentucky, Louisville, Oklahoma State

Turner's talent and shot blocking is well-documented, but his consistent motor also makes the big fella special. Regardless of the outcome of the possession, Turner never stops playing. He runs, jumps and competes at a high level, which makes him stand out.


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Biancardi's Breakdown: Myles Turner 

September, 30, 2013
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The recruitment of No. 2 senior Myles Turner is down to eight schools: Louisville, Ohio State, Texas, Oklahoma State, Kentucky, Kansas, Duke and Arizona. Turner is planning on making his official visits during the season so he can feel the atmosphere and watch the style of play for each program. His intention is to make a decision during the late signing period.

According to his father, David, no officials have been set up. He was scheduled to visit Kansas for "Late Night in The Phog" on Oct. 4-6, but that will be rescheduled so he can participate in the Team USA development mini-camp.

So, where did Myles Turner come from and what kind of player will one lucky school be getting?


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Top 10: Signing ESPN Top 25 players 

September, 11, 2013
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OK, last week we looked at college basketball teams in relation to Top 100 players signed in the last five years. No surprise, the Kentucky Wildcats led the way with 23 Top 100 players from 2009-2013.

Are you sitting down? John Calipari's team didn't merely land players in the Top 100. It dominated the landscape when it came to Top 25 prospects. In total, of the 23 Top 100 players the Cats signed, 19 of them were Top 25 prospects. Whoa.

Most Top 25 Players (Classes 2009-13)


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Top 10: Signing ESPN 100 players 

September, 4, 2013
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Sometimes you have to see it to believe it. Since John Calipari took over at Kentucky we’ve steadily sung the praises of the Wildcats and their recruits. Well, it turns out there was a good reason for the high praise. Kentucky exports prospects to the NBA and imports elite high school players at a rate higher than any of its peers.

The following is a list of programs that signed the most ESPN 100 players from 2009-2013. I know, it’s Telep’s Top 10, but we had some ties. Here’s a snapshot of where the talent goes in our country:

Kentucky (23 ESPN 100 recruits): What did you expect? When there’s a revolving door of lottery picks it’s only natural to replace talent with talent. Because of its ability to put elite talent in the NBA, UK has plenty of openings each year. UK has had four of the last five No. 1 recruiting classes and that's not an accident.

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