Posts Tagged “Recruiting”
Today, the SEC and Big East announced the matchups for this season’s SEC-Big East Challenge, with the Hoyas playing Tennessee on Friday, November 30, at the Verizon Center. The SEC scored their first victory over the Big East outside of the hardwood, though, as five-star recruit Devonta Pollard chose Alabama over Georgetown this evening.
After Nerlens Noel chose Kentucky over Georgetown on April 11, the Hoyas reportedly switched gears with the five-star Pollard at the top of their wish list. The Mississippi native has been highly-touted for his athleticism and defensive instincts. As a senior at Kemper County High School, he averaged 23.8 points, 15.7 rebounds, and 5.1 blocks while leading his team to a state championship. The lefty was also named a McDonald’s All-American and would have marked the Hoyas’ first such player since Austin Freeman and Chris Wright graduated in 2011.
Initially, Pollard was set to make his decision after a scheduled visit to Georgetown in mid-April. For a period of time after Pollard’s visit to the Hilltop, some recruiting circles felt it was a two-horse race between Georgetown and Alabama. The wheels came off, though, after assistant coach Robert Kirby left the program for the same capacity at LSU. Just prior to Pollard’s announcement, he added LSU to the list, perhaps because of Kirby’s arrival in Baton Rouge. Prior to the coach’s departure from the Hilltop, Kirby opened another side of the country for Georgetown recruiting, moving out of the DMV area to secure commitments from Missouri native Otto Porter and Mississippi-born Tyler Adams.
A similar commitment from Pollard would have put the Hoyas at their maximum of 13 scholarships, potentially creating a logjam for scholarships in 2013 with the addition of small forward Stephen Domingo. With a talent of Pollard’s stature, however, it would have been a good problem to have. As it stands now, the Hoyas’ have three commitments from the Class of 2012, headlined by four-star recruit D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera and bolstered by big men Bradley Hayes and Brandon Bolden.
Photo Credit: Jackson Perry
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Well, that was disappointing. Nerlens Noel, the nation’s No.1 college basketball recruit, chose Kentucky over Georgetown and Syracuse on national television Wednesday night.
Noel, a 6-foot-10 center from Everett, Massachusetts had been on Georgetown’s radar (not to mention every other major program’s) for years. After spending his freshman and sophomore year at his local high school in Everett, Noel transferred to the Tilton School in New Hampshire, where he planned to stay for three years and enter college as a member of the class of 2013. However, in February, Noel reclassified to the class of 2012, setting off a recruiting frenzy.
The big man is a game-changing prospect, a true center many have compared to National Player of the Year and likely No. 1 overall draft pick Anthony Davis for his defensive ability. Some have even claimed that Noel is a better shot blocker than Davis, who averaged 4.6 blocks per game this year at Kentucky. Now Noel will have a chance to replace Davis and lead the Wildcats back to the Final Four.
With John Calipari having pulled in the nation’s best recruiting class in each of his three seasons at Kentucky, Georgetown was always the underdog in this recruiting battle. But as Noel dragged out his decision, the Hoyas’ chances kept looking better. The final decision was apparently a tough one for Noel, who claimed to still be undecided even yesterday.
Missing out on Noel isn’t the end of the world for the Hoyas. John Thompson III and his staff still have time to add to a recruiting class that already includes top prospect D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera. Georgetown’s next big target is McDonald’s All-American Devonta Pollard, a 6-foot-7 small forward. Pollard, who will be making his official visit to campus this weekend, is also considering Missouri, Texas, and Alabama.
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Otto Porter, a 6′ 8″ forward from Sikestown, Missouri has verbally committed to Georgetown.
Porter was being pursued by both Missouri and Kansas, where, until now, he was scheduled to visit this weekend. Porter can officially sign his letter-of-intent this Thursday.
This winter, Porter led his high school, Scott County Central, to win the Missouri state championship. He has slowly climbed the recruitment rankings. ESPN.com has even called him “the best player no one knows about,” largely due to his absence from AAU league play.
Porter is the fifth recruit in the 2011 class to commit to Georgetown.
h/t: Casual Hoya
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Greg Whittington, a 6 foot 7 inch forward from Oakland Mills High School in Columbia, Maryland, gave a verbal commitment to Coach John Thompson III on Sunday.
Whittington is the fourth prospect in the 2011 recruiting class to verbally commit to Georgetown this year. Whittington is a two star recruit who averaged 23.5 points and 11.6 rebounds a game his senior year. He also lead his high school with a three-point percentage of 40.2.
Oakland Mills had a perfect regular season, and were 25-0 when they lost in the quarterfinals of the Maryland Division 2A South regional final.
Georgetown’s location was a key factor in Whittington’s recruitment. He was also receiving attention from Texas, Maryland, DePaul, and Clemson.
“I didn’t want to go to far away,” he said. “I’m close to home and my family and friends can come see me play.”
Whittington joins 4-star recruits Tyler Adams and Mikael Hopkins, and 3-star recruit Jabril Trawick.
h/t: Scout.com, ColumbiaPatch
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It’s a great time to be a college basketball fan. The men’s season opens on Friday at Old Dominion. On Saturday, the women’s team opens at home against Augusta State. (And we’re sure you’re counting down the hours until the Voice publishes its annual basketball issue tomorrow.)
To get into the spirit of things, we decided to take a look at the Coach John Thompson III‘s progress on the recruiting trail.
Georgetown 1, Duke 0
One of the biggest surprises at Midnight Madness was the arrival of Tyler Adams, a then-Duke commit. Although recruiting players who have made verbal commitments is traditionally frowned upon, JTIII clearly knew what he was doing; in late October, Duke and Adams officially parted ways.
On November 1, the 6-foot-8-inch, 255-pound center from Mississippi verbally committed to join Georgetown. Adams is a true low-block player and will have a chance some fill the #swag void in the Hoyas’ defense after Julian Vaughn graduates. Georgetown basketball wouldn’t be the same without a talented big man in the paint; Adams will continue the tradition.
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