NCB On The Trail: Alex Robinson

Weekly Commitment Roundup

September, 20, 2013
9/20/13
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SEC
Kentucky
Tyler Ulis PG Matteson, Ill./Marian Catholic
HT: 5-9 WT: 150
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: 8
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 38

Vanderbilt
Matthew Fisher-Davis SG Charlotte, N.C./Charlotte Christian
HT: 6-5 WT: 175
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: 28
Stars: 4

Texas A&M
Alex Robinson PG Arlington, Texas/Timberview
HT: 6-1 WT: 170
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: 20
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 89

Big Ten
Purdue
Vincent Edwards SF Middletown, Ohio/Middletown
HT: 6-7 WT: 200
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: 22
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 80

Big East
Georgetown
Paul White PF Chicago/Whitney Young
HT: 6-8 WT: 185
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: 14
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 57

Seton Hall
Isaiah Whitehead SG Brooklyn, N.Y./Lincoln
HT: 6-4 WT: 195
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: 10
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 35

ACC
Florida State
Josh Gray PG Houston/Odessa College (Juco)
HT: 6-1 WT: 175
Class of 2014

Virginia Tech
T.J. Lang SF Mobile, Ala./McGill-Toolen Catholic
HT: 6-7 WT: 195
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Virginia
Jack Salt C Auckland, New Zealand/Westlake
HT: 6-10
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Wake Forest
Rondale Watson SG Lewisburg, W.Va./Greenbrier East
HT: 6-3
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

American Athletic
Cincinnati
Quadri Moore C Linden, N.J./Linden
HT: 6-8 WT: 225
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: 8
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 83

Gary Clark PF Clayton, N.C./Clayton
HT: 6-7 WT: 215
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: 26
Stars: 4

Central Florida
Alex Owens PF Orlando, Fla./Oak Ridge
HT: 6-8 WT: 230
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: 9
Stars: 4
ESPN 60: 44

Corey Sanders PG Lakeland, Fla./IMG Academy
HT: 6-1 WT: 185
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: 3

Atlantic 10
Virginia Commonwealth
Terry Larrier SF Bronx, N.Y./The Phelps School
HT: 6-7 WT: 200
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: 15
Stars: 4
ESPN 100: 59

Richmond
Paul Friendshuh PF New Prague, Minn./New Prague
HT: 6-9 WT: 205
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Conference USA
Tulsa
Mitch Wilbekin PG Gainesville, Fla./The Rock School
HT: 6-1 WT: 160
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: 2

UTEP
Trey Touchet SG Lafayette, La./St. Thomas More
HT: 6-2 WT: 175
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Middle Tennessee State
DeVante Jones SG Chicago/Southwest Tennessee C.C. (Juco)
HT: 5-11
Class of 2014

Mountain West
Boise State
David Wacker C Converse, Texas/Judson
HT: 6-9 WT: 235
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Air Force
Jacob Van PG Mansfield, Texas/Lake Ridge
HT: 6-2
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Southern Conference
Davidson
Rusty Reigel SG Charlotte, N.C./Charlotte Latin
HT: 6-2 WT: 190
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: 2

Western Carolina
Alex Hicks PF Phenix City, Ala./Glenwood School
HT: 6-8 WT: 195
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

NEC
Mount St. Mary's
Troy Henderson SF Charlotte, N.C./Gaston Day School
HT: 6-6 WT: 175
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

St. Francis (Pa.)
Basil Thompson SF Philadelphia/Imhotep Institute
HT: 6-6 WT: 175
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: 2

Sacred Heart
Cane Broome PG East Hartford, Conn./St. Thomas More
HT: 6-0 WT: 160
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: 2

MAC
Western Michigan
Drake Lamont C Plantation, Fla./American Heritage
HT: 6-9 WT: 200
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: 39
Stars: 3

Ball State
Sean Sellers SF Greensburg, Ind./Greensburg
HT: 6-6 WT: 175
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: 2

Big South
Liberty
A.C. Reid SF Spring Branch, Texas/Smithson Valley
HT: 6-5 WT: 190
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

UNC-Asheville
Kevin Vannatta SG Columbus, Ohio/Upper Arlington
HT: 6-2
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Big Sky
Montana State
Ghassan Nehme SG Colorado Springs, Colo./Cheyenne Mountain
HT: 6-3 WT: 174
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Weber State
Hayden Hunter PG North Richland Hills, Texas/Richland
HT: 5-11
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Idaho State
Geno Luzcando PG Mount Pleasant, Utah/Wasatch Academy
HT: 6-3
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

America East
UMass-Lowell
Josh Gantz PF Grove City, Ohio/Bishop Ready
HT: 6-6 WT 185
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Dontavious Smith PF Springhill, La./North Webster
HT: 6-8
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Binghamton
John Schurman SG Manlius, N.Y./Fayetteville-Manlius
HT: 6-5
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Missouri Valley
Bradley
Donte Thomas SF South Holland, Ill./Thornwood
HT: 6-6
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Northern Iowa
Luke McDonnell PF Dubuque, Iowa/Dubuque Senior
HT: 6-8 WT: 200
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

OVC
Murray State
JayQuan McCloud PG North Chicago, Ill./North Chicago Community
HT: 6-4 WT: 180
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Tennessee-Martin
Chris Clark SG Columbia, Mo./Hickman
HT: 6-3 WT: 175
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

SIU-Edwardsville
C.J. Carr PG Rock Island, Ill./Rock Island
HT: 5-6 WT: 145
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Horizon League
Oakland
Alek Frascone PG Washington Township, Mich./Eisenhower
HT: 6-0 WT: 150
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Summit League
South Dakota State
Mike Daum PF Kimball, Neb./Kimball
HT: 6-9
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Atlantic Sun
Florida Gulf Coast
Eric Moeller C St. Louis/Central Florida C.C. (Juco)
HT: 6-11 WT: 200
Class of 2014

Mercer
Demetre Rivers PF Goose Creek, S.C./Stratford
HT: 6-6
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Ivy League
Princeton
Alec Brennan PF Weston, Mass./Milton Academy
HT: 6-10 WT: 225
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: 35
Stars: 3

Brown
Patrick Triplett PG St. Louis/Bayless Senior
HT: 6-4 WT: 200
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

WCC
Pepperdine
Nate Gehring C Waukee, Iowa/Waukee
HT: 6-10 WT: 220
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: 44
Stars: 3

MAAC
Quinnipiac
Ayron Hutton SG Virginia Beach, Va./Cape Henry
HT: 6-3
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending
Texas A&M coach Billy Kennedy took another excellent point guard off the board on Tuesday when ESPN 100 playmaker Alex Robinson (Arlington, Texas/Timberview) committed to the Aggies over offers from Vanderbilt, Florida State and Pittsburgh and recent interest from Louisville.

"I had a great relationship with the coaching staff, I loved the campus and living conditions at A&M," Robinson said.

Alex Robinson
Reggie RankinESPN 100 PG Alex Robinson is a big pickup for Texas A&M.
The four-star prospect, who is ranked No. 89 overall in the ESPN 100, is fresh off his official visit to College Station over the weekend. This is a huge pickup for Kennedy and his staff, starting with the fact that Robinson is an in-state, nationally recognized recruit at a position that is in incredible demand throughout the country due to lack of high-major depth at the position.

"Coach Kennedy was straightforward with me, and I like that," Robinson said. "Coaches talked to me a lot, but Coach Kennedy backed up what he said with facts, and when I did my research those facts were true."

Notebook: Big weekend in Aggieland 

September, 13, 2013
9/13/13
1:30
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Who’s that guy headed to Xavier? Buffalo? They landed a top-100 player? Plus who’s spending the weekend in College Station? All this and more as we empty the notebook.

Hanging with Johnny Football

[+] EnlargeJustise Winslow
Chris Williams/Icon SMIESPN 100 wing Justise Winslow is looking to visit Texas A&M this weekend and Florida next weekend.
The biggest football extravaganza this weekend takes us to College Station, Texas, where Johnny Football faces the best professional college team in the country, Alabama. Can you imagine how many recruits requested a campus visit that weekend?

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Starting 5: Point guard debate 

August, 20, 2013
8/20/13
11:18
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Editor's note: Every week in "Starting 5," we'll roll out five stories, themes and nuggets from the basketball recruiting world to set the table with the stories that need to be told and give you a leg up on the watercooler conversations around the office.

This week we look at three point guards using different lenses, what plans KU has for Late Night in the Phog, the recruiting revivals at UConn and Minnesota plus reduced lists from bigs Paul White and Makinde London.


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Reading through the typical recruiting jargon can be a difficult task, especially for the untrained eye, but suffice it to say that things aren’t always what they seem.

Some of the most misleading statements often include sayings like, "He has offers from," or "He chose school X over," or "He decommitted from," primarily because they consider only one side of the process.

The fact of the matter is that schools choose prospects as much as prospects choose schools, and the former is no less fluid than the latter.

What does that mean? It means that sometimes when a tweet or recruiting article says Player X committed to School Y over offers from Schools A, B, C and D, what it can really mean is that Schools A, B, C and D offered Player X at some point in the past, but are no longer recruiting him, so he decided to commit to School Y.

Now, why would a school suddenly stop recruiting a prospect? Because they suddenly realized he wasn't good enough? Possibly, but more likely it's because they have since received a commitment from, or feel like they are on the verge of a commitment from, someone else at the same position whom they hold in a little higher esteem.

So, with that in mind, we're going to rewind through a particularly busy few weeks in the national point guard market and make an attempt to translate the real story. Whether it was a prospect who made a commitment or cut his list, we'll tell you which schools are in, which are out, the real story behind whose decision it was, and the bottom line for each prospect. Then we'll circle back and tell you which two ESPN 100 point guards are still uncommitted and open to new suitors.

[+] EnlargeTyus Jones
AP Photo/Damen Jackson No. 1 PG Tyus Jones recently reaffirmed his desire to play college hoops with No. 1 overall recruit Jahlil Okafor.
News: Tyus Jones (Apple Valley, Minn./Apple Valley) reaffirms his intent to go to school with Jahlil Okafor (Chicago, Ill./Whitney Young)
In: Baylor, Duke, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan State, Ohio State
Out: Minnesota
Real story: Minnesota is still on Jones' list of seven, but the Gophers aren't on Okafor's list. That, in addition to the fact Richard Pitino and his staff could be seen prioritizing other targets this summer, is indication enough that Jones isn't likely to be staying home next season. The latest twist in the story is Okafor's AAU coach, Mike Irvin, going on record saying there is a great chance Duke lands Jones, while Okafor's camp has denied the Blue Devils are the leader for the package deal.
Bottom line: Jones and Okafor do want to go to school together, but they don't yet agree on where. Jones appears pretty set on Duke, but Okafor not quite as much at this point. ESPN 100 SF Justise Winslow (Houston/Saint John's) is also part of the conversation, making this potentially one of the biggest package deals in recent history.


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Notebook: Recruiting notes from July 

August, 2, 2013
8/02/13
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Thanks to a busy July and a run of news this week following the end of the July evaluation periods, the return of our weekly Friday recruiting notebook has no shortage of big-time recruiting info. From a big decommitment for Louisville to a host of trimmed up college lists to notes from a busy month on the road, we’ve got you covered.

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Top 10 lessons learned in July 

July, 31, 2013
7/31/13
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To understand what just happened in college basketball recruiting, let me use a golf analogy. In golf majors, Saturdays set the players up for the final round and determine the pairings for the homestretch.

In college basketball, the month of July is like that Saturday of a golf major. Coaches fly coast to coast, some to evaluate and others simply to babysit prospects. It’s a grueling 15 days on the road -- separated into three different five-day open evaluation periods -- and even the seasoned veterans will tell you that. Technology has made it easier to keep track of the recruits, but travel is travel, and so much time in different cities is rough on the bodies of the players and coaches.

Still, July remains the single most important month on the recruiting calendar. It sets the tone for in-home and official visits. It helps set up the final round and determines the pairings for the homestretch.

For the better part of July 6-28, I was on the road. Every day was something new and an opportunity to gather intelligence on players and pay attention to the world of college basketball recruiting. If you didn’t learn something daily, you weren’t doing your job.

Here are 10 key things I learned this month on the recruiting trail, from package deals to the loaded 2016 class and everything in between.

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Top 10 things from the first half of July 

July, 17, 2013
7/17/13
12:02
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The first half of a July on the recruiting trail was more of a sprint than anything else. July 6-14 was a convergence of talent and time zones. From Las Vegas to North Augusta, S.C., to Indianapolis, I felt like I was in a new city daily with waves of players being tossed at me.

After having a chance to get my bearings, here are 10 things that stood out from the cross-country travel assignment. This entails info not only from the Nike Peach Jam and adidas Invitational during the first open evaluation period (July 10-14) but also from the LeBron James Skills Academy (July 6-8) before the live period began. The second half of July includes two more open eval periods July 17-21 and 24-28.

1. White was on the verge of elevating his game

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