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Villanova Basketball Recruiting Roundup from Friday’s Nike Peach Jam

Lonnie Walker may be shaping up to be a Villanova-Kentucky battle.

NCAA Basketball: Final Four Championship Game-Villanova vs North Carolina Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

The final day of Peach Jam qualifiers saw the ‘Nova staff once again entrenched in North Augusta, S.C.

The Wildcats staff started off the day watching a pair of 17U games. Jordan Tucker and the NY RENS got a scout for the second straight day. Tucker had another so-so day shooting the ball, but with his visit scheduled for next month it’s no surprise to see Wright watching closely.

The other morning game featured Hameir Wright and the Albany City Rocks. Wright continues to speak positively about Villanova (and Syracuse for that matter) and it looks like this recruitment may end up being a battle of the longtime rivals.

As ESPN’s Jeff Borzello noted in his Villanova Recruiting Roadmap ($) - the ‘Cats are starting to recruit City Rocks guard Anthony Gaines. Gaines is a 3-star guard who is a great rebounder for his size and can play and defend multiple positions. He could be a good backup plan if other targets fall through.

Collin Sexton and the Southern Stampede didn’t qualify for the Peach Jam, but did score an invite at the nearby Peach Invitational. That drew Jay Wright’s attention in the early afternoon. Sexton is the most recent offer for ‘Nova.

Wright then moved on to watch the Team Takeover 16U group. The big name there is 2018 5-star forward Jalen Smith - he already holds a ‘Nova offer and visited last year for Hoops Mania.

In the evening session, Villanova stopped by the Expressions Elite game. While the two biggest names are Tremont Waters and Nick Richards, ‘Nova was there for wing Jermaine Samuels. He didn’t disappoint with a team-high 17 points and 16 rebounds and he shot very well from the floor.

The staff finished off the night by watcing Team Final’s last game vs. the NY RENS. The game was meaningless for both teams, but Dhamir Cosby-Roundtree, Lonnie Walker and Jordan Tucker all played.

Speaking of Walker, the big news was this interview with the media where he gave some insight into his recruitment. Mom wants him to stay near home, while Dad wants him to go further away.

Spoiler alert: He spoke very highly of ‘Nova, but Kentucky is starting to make him a priority. We’ve seen this story before, and it hasn’t ended well. Will this time be different?

The quarterfinals and semifinals of the Peach Jam are set for today. Wright is still in town and has already been seen watching 2019 studs R.J. Barrett and Andrew Nembhard. We’ll recap it all when the day’s over.