In the spirit of Villanova apparently getting back into the Rysheed Jordan sweepstakes, we thought we'd take a deeper look at what we believe are Villanova's highest priority recruiting targets for the class of 2013. We'll take a look at who the main competition is and what they are saying about the recruitment.
Josh Hart appears to be the most likely to be the next commitment for Villanova, but the Wildcats face competition from Rutgers, Penn State, Miami (FL) and Xavier.
What they're saying
Rice clearly wants a dynamic small forward to replace Dane Miller, and he's also after swingman Josh Hart and BJ Johnson. Both would fill that role, and Hart seems to be quickly rising up the charts. However, in his commitment article with Zagoria, Kris Jenkins says his number 1 job right now is to get Hart to commit to 'Nova. Hart is scheduled to visit Rutgers the weekend of the first home football game. It is urgent for Rice to get the kid on campus.
Rutgers Bonus: Kris Jenkins!
And finally, came Kris Jenkins. Ask most experts, and they seemed to think Jenkins, a PF, would choose Rutgers and choose them soon. However, word came down this morning that he chose Villanova. This choice hurt, and it begins to seed doubt into the minds of Rutgers fans.
Editor's Note: I love that. Are these the same experts that had Rutgers joining the Big Ten last summer?.
#DoWorkPat - Quick hoops recruiting update. With Payton Banks' commitment, PSU has strengthened their wing positions for the future, but they still have one scholarship to give to the 2013 class. With offers out to both wing and point guard prospects, PSU seems to be taking a best player available approach. Everyone wants Josh Hart, but PSU is keeping their options open with other potential players. Meanwhile, Brandon Austin is involved with Syracuse, Georgetown, Florida, and Syracuse.
Josh Hart (DC) - 4 star shooting guard (6'4") from Washington, DC, versatile player with a rep as a strong defensive player and on court leader. He has known of Coach L since he was at George Mason and should know that the numbers work in his favor as far as playing time goes. He is down to a top five of Miami, Rutgers, Villanova, Arizona and PSU. One negative wrinkle is close friend Kris Jenkins who plays for cross town rival Gonzaga HS committed to Villanova last week and both have talked about playing at the same school together. Since his commitment Jenkins is making a hard push to get Hart to commit with him, as reported by ZagsBlog.
Tyler Roberson is the prototypical fit at the 4-spot for Villanova. He's uber-talented and his ability to play both inside and out has Wildcat fans drooling. However, they face stiff competition from Kentucky, Kansas, Rutgers, Syracuse and SMU.
What they're saying
Rice and crew are still involved in a bunch of highly rated forwards, one of which is Tyler Roberson out of Union, NJ. Clearly the next highest ranked player out there, Roberson is being wooed much like Lawrence was being wooed. It'll take a ton of convincing to get Roberson to commit, but according to an article on Zagsblog, Roberson loves Rutgers' staff.
He looks like a backup plan to me.
Editor's Note: Let's hope so!
Villanova fans thought they were out with Jordan, but it turns out he's still considering the Wildcats. He just recently tripped to St. John's with UCLA next up on the calendar. Temple, Rutgers and Maryland are all involved as well.
What they're saying
St. John's has been courting Jordan for years, though the Red Storm name hasn't often been listed as one of his four or five schools. Rysheed Jordan is a big point guard, immensely athletic, often spoken of as strong and explosive. He is adept with his dribble and can draw contact, and is a strong defender.
Rutgers is still chasing point guards as well, as rumor has it they are after both Rysheed Jordan and Roddy Peters. Both would help balance out Rutgers' guard class and let a player at the most important position on the floor mature behind Jerome Seagears, Myles Mack, and Eli Carter.
It seemed that Jordan had faded down Mark Turgeon's list of point guards with the emergence of Roddy Peters but maybe not. Zags says he's visiting for Midnight Madness, as are the Harrisons according to a report by Andy Katz yesterday. Should be interesting to see how Turgeon juggles the point guard situation. Not a bad problem to have.
To no surprise, Rutgers fans seem a bit delusional about their basketball recruiting prospects, but it is nice to see that Kentucky sees Roberson as Plan B and the Rysheed Jordan race still appears to be wide open.
What do y'all think?
Elite basketball prospects can turn a good team great, but you also run the risk of a short-term rental, but most elite freshmen don't go pro after just one year; 61% of early-entry players in the NBA draft are Juniors and only 15% are freshmen. More than half of McDonald's All-Americans play at least three seasons in college. In other words, talent is talent and it's always good to add some.