Gottfried Lays the First Brick: Rodney Purvis Commits to NC StatePosted by mpatton on October 3rd, 2011
NC State‘s Mark Gottfried took a big step towards rebuilding the Wolfpack program in picking up a commitment from Rodney Purvis on Friday. Assistant coach Tim Fuller originally recruited Purvis to play for Rick Pitino at Louisville. However, once Fuller left to take an offer from former Miami coach Frank Haith at Missouri, Purvis reopened his recruitment. Friday Purvis announced his decision to stay home and play for the Wolfpack. The commitment has huge implications, especially with former point guard Ryan Harrow transferring to Kentucky. Purvis is an incredibly talented combo guard, ranked in the top sixteen prospects of the class of 2012 by Scout.com, Rivals.com (where he is highest at sixth) and ESPNU.
But Purvis’ commitment means more than the pure talent he brings to the court. He represents a local star staying home–much like his future teammate CJ Leslie did–but he also represents Gottfried’s first step towards restoring NC State’s basketball tradition. Leslie’s former high school teammate John Wall attended Purvis’ announcement and noted the importance of his decision: “There’s a lot of pressure […] He’s the hometown hero now.” Wall was faced with a similar decision, but chose the bright lights of Rupp Arena over the RBC Center.
This isn’t to say that Purvis will be an instant savior or a golden ticket to the Sweet Sixteen, but he may be expected to be one. Regardless, he will give Mark Gottfried a fair chance to showcase his new system with talented athletes. Assuming everyone stays (which is asking a lot of a player with the upside CJ Leslie has), NC State will showcase Purvis, Leslie, Lorenzo Brown and Scott Wood for Purvis’ freshman year. Those are gifted athletes and talented basketball players capable of taking the Wolfpack back to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since Herb Sendek was pushed out in 2006.