Wednesday, October 23, 2013
Hoops recruiting class analysis
By Paul Biancardi
What do the commitments of Ahmed Hill and Marial Shayok mean for Marquette in the RecruitingNation class rankings? Which conference needs to step it up? What's the bold prediction for this week? We take a look at those questions and more.
Ahmed Hill's ability to shoot from long range will be an asset for Marquette.
Marquette coach Buzz Williams and his staff were very active and productive in landing long-range shooter Ahmed Hill and athletic small forward Marial Shayok. In Hill, the Golden Eagles gain a physically strong guard who has the ability to make shots from deep. Shayok is an athletic wing with good size and perimeter skills who has been on Marquette's radar for a long time. The Golden Eagles now have four recruits, including two ESPN 100 prospects, with excellent size and versatility. A couple of weeks ago, they were not in our Top 25 class rankings, but they have now shot all the way up to No. 10. Marquette finished the 2013 recruiting season at No. 11.
Making a move
The entire Pac-12 has only six ESPN 100 commitments. We know there was a huge transition in this league, especially at USC and UCLA, which is the biggest reason the conference is down on the recruiting trail. USC has one ESPN 100 player in Jordan McLaughlin, while UCLA had Trevon Bluiett before he decommitted.
But everyone in the league should shoulder the responsibility. The one recruiting power has been Arizona, as coach Sean Miller and his staff have been consistently strong in bringing in top-rated players and classes. If you want to be a power conference that is successful in nonconference play and in the postseason, you must bring in talent that can help you win. Success on the floor starts with recruiting.
What to watch
Early or late? That is the recruiting question that revolves around the nation's top uncommitted prospects at this time. There are a few players who may be on the verge of making their decision sooner rather than waiting for the actual signing period in November. Keep an eye on Devin Robinson, who has taken all of his official visits and canceled his visit to UConn. A decision may be coming soon, as he is down to Florida, Notre Dame, Oklahoma State and Indiana. Meanwhile, Justise Winslow is visiting Duke this weekend and Stanford on Nov. 7.
After speaking with both Myles Turner and Rashad Vaughn, it looks as if they're headed for a decision after November. Turner only visited Ohio State last week, so it is highly likely he will wait until the season or possibly go all the way to the late signing period in April. Vaughn is taking his first official visit to Iowa State on Nov. 17, and UNLV will be up next on Nov. 25.
The Big East, with only 10 teams, is tied with the ACC for the most ESPN 100 recruits, thanks to Hill's recent pledge to Marquette. That is a great testament to the coaches in that league who are dealing with a transition year in which they lost three outstanding teams (Syracuse, Notre Dame and Pittsburgh) to the ACC.
Unfortunately, all precincts have not reported their final votes. The SEC only has nine of the ESPN 100 prospects already committed. And of the 26 remaining uncommitted ESPN 100 recruits on the board, the SEC and ACC are involved with a good portion of those players. When the signing period rolls around, expect the ACC to be the overall leader in landing the most ESPN 100 recruits.