Morning Five: 10.22.10 EditionPosted by rtmsf on October 22nd, 2010
- Thursday was a big day in the recruiting world, as three top prospects in the Class of 2011 made their commitments public with the result that two Big 12 schools not named Kansas and Texas will also be bringing elite talent onto their campuses. The #4 player in that class according to Rivals, LeBryan Nash, committed to Oklahoma State, while the #5 player, Quincy Miller, and his teammate and #43 player, Deuce Bello, committed to Baylor. Nash and Miller are program-changing forwards, while Bello is a ridiculously athletic shooting guard. As an aside, Scott Drew is absolutely getting it done on the recruiting trail — Miller represents the third top ten player to commit to the Bears in the last two years (Perry Jones arrives this year; seven-footer Isaiah Austin will arrive in 2012), and he’s beating out the likes of grizzled veteran recruiters such as Rick Pitino for these kids. When you also consider that Baylor had to rekindle an entire program from the ashes of the Dave Bliss debacle merely seven years ago, seeing this kind of talent commit to play ball in Waco is nothing short of extraordinary.
- The preseason USA Today/Coaches poll came out on Thursday, and as expected, Duke was at the top with 29 of the 31 first-place votes. Michigan State was second and received the other two first-place votes. Kansas State, Pittsburgh and Ohio State rounded out the top five. For a little historical perspective, last year’s Final Four teams were ranked #2 (Michigan State), #8 (Duke), #9 (West Virginia) and #10 (Butler) in the preseason.
- Could the summer evaluation/recruiting period become a thing of the past? According to a report released Thursday, the Conference Commissioners Association voted last month to recommend abolition of the summer period. The NCAA’s Board of Directors will make the final decision on this, but many coaches are already harping on the proposal as a disaster in the making. In an email sent to coaches from NABC president Tom Izzo, he noted that it will become much more difficult and costly to evaluate prospects individually rather than in the summer camp group setting, and that the cancerous influence of agents, runners and other hangers-on during the summer will only become more powerful without the coaches and NCAA around to lend an air of propriety.
- Scary news from the DC area that former Georgetown star guard Charles Smith was shot twice in the chest on Thursday and was taken to the hospital in critical condition. Smith was the Big East POY in 1989 and played on the 1988 bronze-medal US Olympic team, the last US international basketball team comprised solely of collegians. The suspect who shot Smith is still at large, but we certainly hope that Smith comes through this ok and his assailant is brought to justice.
- The Atlantic 10 media made their predictions yesterday in NYC, with Temple receiving the burden of expectations to win the conference while Xavier, Richmond and Dayton fell in line behind the Owls. The preseason all-A10 first team consists of Lavoy Allen (Temple), Kevin Anderson (Richmond), Andrew Nicholson (St. Bonaventure), Damian Saunders (Duquesne) and Chris Wright (Dayton).