Who’s Got Next? Parker Will Decide Monday, Upshaw to Fresno StatePosted by Josh Paunil on April 19th, 2012
Who’s Got Next? is a weekly column by Josh Paunil, the RTC recruiting guru. We encourage you to check out his website dedicated solely to college basketball recruiting, National Recruiting Spotlight, for more detailed recruiting information. Once a week he will bring you an overview of what’s going on in the complex world of recruiting, from who is signing where among the seniors to who the hot prospects are at the lower levels of the sport. If you have any suggestions as to areas we are missing or different things you would like to see, please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lead Story: Top-20 Power Forward Tony Parker To Announce His Decision Monday
Second-Best Undecided Senior Will Decide Between Five. Class of 2012 power forward Tony Parker has had one of the most secretive recruitments in the Class of 2012. The 6’9″, 273-pound big man has kept all of the recruiting analysts guessing since the beginning and many popular guesses have come and gone ranging from Ohio State and Duke to more recently UCLA and his hometown team, Georgia. But Monday at around 3:30 or 4 PM, according to the Atlanta-Journal Constitution, Parker will finally announce his college intentions. His final five consists of Duke, Georgia, Kansas, Ohio State, and UCLA. I doubt he will go to Kansas or Georgia so that leaves Duke, Ohio State, and UCLA. It seems to me that the two schools with the best shot at him are Ohio State and UCLA and if I had to bet on where he goes I would pick UCLA, but honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised if he choose any of the five schools except for Kansas. So, in order, I think the schools that have the best shot with him are UCLA, Ohio State, Duke, Georgia, and then Kansas. If he does indeed choose UCLA, that would give them arguably the best recruiting class in the country between their class of Parker, point guard Kyle Anderson, and small forwards Shabazz Muhammad and Jordan Adams.
What They’re Saying
- Senior Nerlens Noel on his second choice after committing to Kentucky: “Georgetown. My mom really liked them a lot. She was sold on them. She loved how family oriented they were and, like I said in my blog, my mom’s opinion was what mattered most to me. We had to sit down and talk and I had to really get her to take a longer look at Kentucky. Then when she did she started to like them a lot, too. But it was pretty close, man. It was pretty close.”
- Senior Robert Upshaw on committing to Fresno State: “I sat down and really thought about it and I felt like me and [head] coach [Rodney] Terry‘s relationship the past four years has been something that has been building. I felt I had three years to make a decision to go to Kansas State and now that I only had a certain amount of time to make another one, I felt like I had to look at everything — relationships, knowing people.”
- Junior Juwan Parker on his list and favorite school: “I’m down to Memphis, Vanderbilt, Tulsa, and Oklahoma. Memphis is my number one. I just like Memphis, every time I visit I love it and the coaching staff has really shown me that they want me. I just feel at home there.”
- Junior Chris Walker on his top schools: “My top five right now is Florida, Kentucky, Kansas, Ohio State, and Baylor, and Syracuse. So I guess it’s a top six.”
- Junior Troy Williams on his final two schools, Kentucky and North Carolina, and why he cut Georgetown: “I like both schools’ playing styles and coaches. I also like how I get along with the players. Georgetown was dropped because they didn’t play my style. They didn’t keep in touch as much as Kentucky and North Carolina.”
- Sophomore Chris McCullough on his dream school: “UConn is my dream school, they were my favorite team growing up. If they offer me, I think I’ll take it.”
- Sophomore Justin Jackson on which schools have shown interest in him: “I have offers from Georgetown, Texas A&M, Texas, Baylor, Ohio State, Washington, Virginia, Virginia Tech and then North Carolina, Duke, Kansas, Stanford, and Florida have started recruiting me.”
Juwan Parker Considering Four, Memphis Leads. Class of 2013 shooting guard Juwan Parker doesn’t plan on committing until at least the end of the summer, but he has already cut his list down to four schools, including a favorite. Parker lists Memphis, Vanderbilt, Tulsa, and Oklahoma and says that the Tigers are his number one school. According to Parker, Memphis is recruiting him the hardest and he also thinks he fits into their system. More importantly, he feels “at home” in Memphis and loves the coaching staff. He’s already visited the Tigers multiple times, but still looks to visit them once more this summer in addition to Vanderbilt. His trip to Vanderbilt will be his first one to the school and he has already visited the other two schools on his list, Oklahoma and Tulsa. He plans on cutting down his list once more to down to two schools and will make a decision between the end of the summer and October. Parker is a good shooter who can fill up the basket quickly. He also has a good mid-range game and good athleticism.
What We Learned
Update: Chris McCullough now denies saying that Connecticut is his dream school and claims an offer from them. This section of the column has been edited to reflect this change.
Connecticut Is Standout Sophomore’s “Dream School”. Class of 2014 power forward Chris McCullough has drawn much interest from some of the top programs across the country and said last night that he’s looking to make a commitment this summer. McCullough is a top-25 (top-10 according to some services) and has already drawn interest from the 2011 National Champions Connecticut Huskies. The New York native currently claims offers from North Carolina, West Virginia, Hofstra, Arizona, St. John’s, Connecticut, Pittsburgh, Louisville, Cincinnati, and Villanova, among several others, and has already visited Connecticut, Syracuse, St. John’s, Iowa State, Providence, Rutgers, and Seton Hall. He is looking to visit Memphis soon although he does not have a date set. He has great length and athleticism and has good lateral quickness. McCullough is pretty versatile and has a high ceiling.
Jabari Parker, Shabazz Muhammad Win National Awards. As if Class of 2012 star small forward Shabazz Muhammad (UCLA) and Class of 2013 stud power forward Jabari Parker haven’t won enough awards already, each of them earned their most prestigious honor to date as Parker won the Gatorade National Player of the Year award and Muhammad earned Mr. Basketball USA. Parker is only the fourth non-junior to ever win the award and joins LeBron James, Greg Oden, and Brandon Knight as the only players to do so. Parker led the Wolverines to a 33-1 record and a third straight state championship this season. He averaged 20.4 points, 9.2 rebounds, 5.1 assists, 3.4 blocks, and 1.5 steals per game, shooting 55 percent from the field, 39 percent from 3-point range, and 72 percent from the free throw line. Muhammad, who Parker beat out for the Gatorade National Player of the Year honor, is the first Mr. Basketball USA from a Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association school and the first from the West Region since Jason Kidd in 1991-92. He won MVP honors in both the McDonald’s All-American game and Jordan Brand Classic and averaged 30 points and 10.2 rebounds per game this season.
Video of the Week
Weren’t able to catch the Jordan Brand Classic Saturday night? Well, here’s a look at some of the top plays from not only the game but from the week of practices, too. As always, Hoopmixtape did a great job with this video.