It’s a big day for high school seniors and college athletics across the country, as committed recruits make it official by signing their letter of intent as part of National Signing Day.
The Wildcats inked four class of 2021 commits — Trey Patterson (Somerset, N.J./Rutgers Prep), Nnanna Njoku (Hockessin, Del./Sanford School), Jordan Longino (Doylestown, Pa./Germantown Academy), and Angelo Brizzi (Warrenton, Va./Highland).
According to 247 sports, this group is another excellent recruiting haul for Jay Wright, coming in ranked as the No. 4 class in the country.
We caught up all four commits, and they put their Signing Day experience in their own words. We also got a few words from their future head coach.
A consensus four-star prospect ranked in the top-30 nationally, Patterson is the Wildcats’ highest-rated member of the quartet. A standout at Rutgers Prep (N.J.) and on the Under Armour Association for Team Rio, Patterson averaged 19.7 points per game as a junior last season and led Rutgers Prep to the NJSIAA sectional title game. Patterson is a versatile two-way player blessed with length, athleticism, and the ability to guard multiple positions. Read more about Trey Patterson on VUHoops.com here.
How it feels to officially sign: “Signing my national letter of intent is kind of like the culmination of my high school career. I put in all the hard work, late nights and early mornings for this moment. It’s kind of like the final step in my high school career before I go on to start my college career. It’s just a cool experience to be able to share it with my parents.”
Signing Day plans: “Just sharing the moment with my parents, we’re gonna get something to eat and just bask in the moment. Share it with them, that’s all I really have planned today.”
What Patterson looks forward to most about being at Villanova: “Just looking forward to finally getting on campus and being a part of the community. Villanova is such a prestigious community, and I really can’t wait to be a part of it and the basketball program.”
What fans can expect from him: “My mindset is to always go out there and compete, and try to win. I have that winner’s mentality, I’m always competing. I can say to them that you’re getting a competitor, winner, and a very versatile player.”
From Jay Wright: “Trey brings great intelligence and basketball skill to our program. His parents were both quality Division I college players and have served as great mentors to him. Trey combines an outstanding work ethic with a varied skill set that helps sets him apart. We’re excited to bring another great player from New Jersey to Villanova.”
The first commit of Villanova’s 2021 recruiting class, the Wildcats were onto the scene early, offering the 6-foot-9 big man before he earned a single star on various recruiting services. His recruitment blew up shortly after, and the big, bruising center became one of the highly sought out frontcourt players in his class. The four-star center and all-state standout averaged 16 points and nine rebounds per game last season, while shooting 73 percent on the floor. Read more about Nnanna Njoku on VUHoops.com here.
How it feels to officially sign: “It feels amazing, just knowing that I’ve solidified this. It just feels surreal.”
Signing Day plans: “I didn’t have a special ceremony, I’m actually doing that with my school next week. Today, me and my mom just signed it together, and we just shared a moment. I thanked her for everything that she’s done. It was just really emotional.”
What Njoku looks forward to most about being at Villanova: “I’m looking forward to being pushed, honestly. I know that they produce NBA players. They get guys where they need to be, and that’s just what I can’t wait for. I know it’s gonna be hard, but at the end of the day, I’m going to become the best player that I can be.”
What fans can expect from him: “A hard worker that’s going to do his best to help Villanova win.”
From Jay Wright: “Nnanna is a very intelligent young man who has continued to get better over the course of his high school career. He plays extremely hard and brings a physical mentality when he steps on the floor. Nnanna has a great touch around the rim and is an underrated passer. He is part of a terrific family and will be a great fit here in our Villanova community.”
The PIAA Class 4A player of the year, Longino enjoyed a stellar junior season where he averaged 22.8 points and 5.8 rebounds per game. He shot 54 percent overall, with a 41.5 percent clip from long range. He committed in late July, citing Villanova’s guard-heavy tradition. He’s on pace to break 1997 Villanova graduate Alvin Williams’ all-time scoring record at Germantown Academy (Pa.). Read more about Jordan Longino on VUHoops.com here.
How it feels to officially sign: “It’s a surreal moment. When I verbally committed a couple months ago that was something I dreamed of my whole life. Now to make it official and be locked in is just a dream come true in my opinion. I’ve been waiting for this moment ever since I started playing basketball. This is what every kid dreams about, and the fact that I’m living it is something I have to use as a blessing and me thankful for.”
Signing Day plans: “At school, had a few pictures with my family and my coaches, just signing there. Nothing much, tough with the pandemic. ... Really just been at home, enjoying this moment with my family — my brother, my sister, my mom, and my dad — they’ve helped me a lot and supported me. Celebrating with them is all I need. They keep me level-headed and keep me on a straight path.”
What Longino looks forward to most about being at Villanova: “Looking forward to joining the brotherhood at Villanova and growing my relationship with Coach Wright, the coaching staff, and my fellow recruits. Just joining the community that is ‘Nova Nation and bettering myself on the court and off the court.”
What fans can expect from him: “I’m a guy that played football and basketball, so I’m used to competing, battling, and do whatever it takes to win. Anything that Coach Wright or my teammates ask me, I’m willing to do. Whether it’s guard the hardest guy on the team, make shots, facilitate the ball or sit on the bench and cheer on the guys on the court. I’m just a guy that anything that coach asks me to do, I’m willing to do.”
From Jay Wright: “Jordan is a highly-skilled, versatile player from a wonderful family. At Germantown Academy he’s excelled in two sports and his experience as a football quarterback points to his exceptional intelligence. Jordan is an excellent shooter, and we believe his multi-faceted game fits well here at Villanova.”
A three-star guard from Warrenton, Va., Brizzi is coming off another stellar high school season. The 6-foot-3 southpaw was named MVP of the Delaney Athletic Conference for the second year in a row after averaging 20.3 points, 4.2 rebounds, 6.6 assists, and 3.2 steals. He was a catalyst in Highland’s (Va.) historic season, which culminated in a 23-3 record and the program’s first ever trip to the VISAA Division II semifinals. Read more about Angelo Brizzi on VUHoops.com here.
How it feels to officially sign: “It’s probably a cliche, but it’s a dream come true. It’s an honor, and I’m extremely fortunate to be in this position and I’m excited.”
Signing Day plans: “My school is all virtual right now, so we had a lot of kids sign today in different sports. Nobody is going to do a ceremony there, but I think they’re going to try to do one later. I haven’t really done anything today, I think my family might try to have a little celebration in a couple of days, maybe this weekend. Just did the signing with my parents. Not too much, I think we’re going to find something a little bit later.”
What Brizzi looks forward to most about being at Villanova: “Everything. I know the community loves basketball, so that’s going to be great to be a part of. Honestly, I think the people there — teammates, coaching staff are all really good people and they all want the best out of everybody, and they want to win. That’s a culture I want to be a part of, and I’m really excited to get into it.”
What fans can expect from him: “A point guard who plays hard and just wants to win. That’s my main thing. Hopefully, I can help lead us to some wins one day, but I know there’s some really good players there right now. I want to come in, I want to learn, I want to help in any way I can.”
From Jay Wright: “Angelo is an outstanding guard who brings a great feel for the game as the son of a coach. He is an excellent shooter who is capable of playing either guard position. We believe Angelo has all the ingredients needed to become a complete Villanova guard. We’re thrilled to welcome Angelo and his great family to Villanova.”