Friday, October 18, 2013
Possible domino effect for top four
By Reggie Rankin
The 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.
If Okafor and Jones split, Okafor could say yes to Kentucky and Jones could shock the college basketball blue bloods and stay home and go to Minnesota. That's probably the least likely of all the scenarios because Okafor and Jones are going to get the first right of refusal at Kansas and Duke because of the possible elite center-point guard package deal.
For Myles Turner: He is in Columbus, Ohio, with the Buckeyes this weekend, getting the red-carpet treatment on his first official visit. He also has in-state power Texas on his list, and the Longhorns could be the sleeper because they have most access, being the closest and just as much basketball eye candy as the others.
But if Okafor and Jones go to Duke or Kansas, the school they don't select could become Turner's favorite, in addition to Kentucky, with Ohio State still in the mix as well. Other schools in Turner's final eight should not be disregarded yet because Ohio State is his first official visit. He had to reschedule a Kansas visit because of a USA Basketball minicamp.
Turner's process is starting to take shape, but it could change quickly if Okafor and Jones pop first.
For Cliff Alexander: He has already visited Kansas and is at Memphis this weekend. He will have the opportunity to do a little comparing and contrasting. But if Okafor and Jones go to Duke, Kansas will have to come on even stronger for Alexander and Turner. Josh Pastner and Memphis will put on a great visit for Alexander and will certainly have his attention, but they will have to beat Kansas. The sleeper is in-state Illinois. The Fighting Illini could also pull this thing off, especially if Okafor and Jones pick Kansas.