College Commitment Projections- September Edition, Part 3

by Alex Schwartz

It is time to continue my college commitment predictions for the class of 2010. I have gone through all 17 of the uncommitted players ranked in the top 30 of Northstar Basketball's Class of 2010 Terrific 125. To view part one (10 uncommitted players in top 20) click here, and to see part two (seven uncommitted players between 21 and 30) click here. Now I will be jumping around a bit with 10 other prospects ranked between 31 and 100 in Northstar Basketball's Class of 2010 Terrific 125. Check it out:

Cory Joseph, PG, 6'1, Findlay Prep (NV), #31
Favorite: Minnesota
2nd in Line: Texas
3rd in Line: Villanova
Watch Out for: UNLV
The opportunity to play with his older brother Devoe Joseph might be too much for Cory to pass up on. Tubby Smith has done a great job recruiting players to the Big Ten school and obviously has a great selling point to use with the star point guard. The Canadian nationals would be able to play together for two years, and along with Rodney Williams '09 and McDonald's All-American Royce White '09 would not only compete for a Big Ten title, but possibly a fair run in the NCAA Tournament. There is a huge pull at Texas for Joseph as well. He would be able to continue playing with fellow Canadians and AAU teammates with Grassroots Canada Tristan Thompson '10 and Myck Kabongo '10, the former of whom also attends Findlay Prep. Joseph's first official visit was to Austin, which is a good sign for the Longhorns. Villanova is still looking for a point guard in this class, and Joseph seems to be the prime target. Jay Wright is making a push to land him, and the efforts do not look to be going unnoticed. If Cory decides he wants to play on the East Coast, the Big East school will likely be his destination. Speaking of location, if he feels he wants to stay in the Las Vegas-area, then UNLV is right there and he would have a major impact from day one at the Mountain West program. Expect it to come down to Minnesota and Texas at the end of the day.

Roscoe Smith, SF, 6'8, Oak Hill Academy (VA), #35
Favorite: UConn
2nd in Line: Florida
3rd in Line: Kentucky
W
atch Out for: Duke, Kansas
Smith's list is a who's who of national powerhouses, and they are all in the eastern half of the country. I have heard that Smith really seems to like UConn and Duke, and right now the Huskies are probably the more likely choice. The reason is that the Blue Devils are going after Harrison Barnes '10 and are considered by many, including yours truly, to be the leader to land Barnes. If Mike Krzyzewski was to take Smith, Barnes might be much less likely to attend the ACC school, as both are long, versatile wings. If Barnes pops for someone else, then Smith may well end up in Durham, which is why Coach K and Co. are listed as a school to watch for. As of now, Jim Calhoun looks to be the most likely future head coach for Smith. Do not discount other big-time programs, namely Florida, Kentucky, and Kansas. The Gators may be in the position of the trio, because just like UConn, they are not recruiting Barnes (granted, UK is no longer involved either) and thus can devote more time and attention to Smith, in addition to not waiting to take his commitment if he should decide to pledge. Kentucky seems like a school that Smith would be intrigued by, and the Wildcats are not going to get Barnes so Smith moves up the ladder. Kansas is another school that has Roscoe as a backup to Barnes and has a shot to land the ultra-long wing.

Dwight Powell, C, 6'9, IMG Academy (FL), #39
Favorite: Stanford
2nd in Lin
e: Georgia Tech
3rd in Line: Harvard

Dwight Powell is truly a student-athlete, as the long big man has narrowed his list down to three of the nation's elite academic institutions. Three very different programs in three different parts of the nation (Stanford, Harvard, and Georgia Tech) are battling it out for another member of the loaded Grassroots Canada squad. When you look at the national rankings, the order of the trio academically is Harvard, Stanford, then Georgia Tech, though one really cannot go wrong between them. Although Harvard is arguably the nation's best school academically, on the basketball court the Crimson cannot matchup with the other two, as it is a low-major against two high-majors. Normally in this case, the low-major program does not win out, and when it is an Ivy League school there is the added factor that the program cannot offer an athletic scholarship, which sometimes poses a problem. For Powell to list Harvard in his final three is huge for the program, but that looks to be as far as the Crimson will get. Stanford looks to have a leg up on Georgia Tech, and Johnny Dawkins, another former Duke player and assistant coach—Amaker is the other—appears to be the one that will end up with Powell. That is not to rule out the Yellow Jackets though, as the ACC school is still very much in play. When all is said and done, I expect Dwight to select the Cardinal, but Georgia Tech will not go down easily, and nor will Harvard.

Trey Zeigler, SG, 6'4, Mount Pleasant (MI), #49
Favorite: Michigan
2nd in Line: Michigan State
3rd in L
ine: Central Michigan
Watch Out for: UCLA
For some reason, I get the feeling with Zeigler that he is going to stay in the Great Lakes State. That makes it basically a three-horse race between Michigan, Michigan State, and Central Michigan, though if he decides to go out of state UCLA is a strong possibility,especially if AAU teammate Ray McCallum '10 goes there, as I predicted. Trey's father is Ernie Zeigler, the head coach at CMU, so the Chippewas are squarely in the hunt for the athletic wing. It seems less likely that he will opt to go with his father's school than a high-major school. MSU has a few higher priorities than Zeigler, namely CJ Leslie and Adreian Payne and already has a top-notch wing in this class in 6'7 Russell Byrd. Although Michigan does have Tim Hardaway, Jr. locked up, he is not at the same level as Zeigler. John Beilein is also focusing a lot of attention on Casey Prather, a wing from Tennessee, so that makes things tougher to read. Overall, it is hard to get a feel for Zeigler's recruitment, but I do think he will wind up staying in-state.

Luke Cothron, PF, 6'8, Flora MacDonald Academy (NC), #53
Favorite: UConn
2nd
in Line: North Carolina State
3rd in Line: Kansas
Watch Out for: North Carolina, Duke

As of now, it seems as though Cothron is leaning towards attending UConn. Who knows if the Huskies would take both him and Smith, or more likely, if the two would want to play together, as both are 6'8 and can play either forward spot. Nonetheless, Jim Calhoun is in a good spot to land Cothron. Another school that is nice shape right now is North Carolina State. The Wolfpack seem to be, as of now, Cothron's lone option if he wants to say in NC. Right now, North Carolina and Duke might not take his pledge, as both programs have higher priorities at the forward spots, such as Harrison Barnes, Roscoe Smith, CJ Leslie (UNC only), etc. If the two school do not land any of those players, they could be dangerous players for Cothron, with UNC having a leg up on the Blue Devils. Back to NC State, Luke would be a huge coup for Sidney Lowe, and would likely get a fair amount of playing time early on, which would probably be appealing. Do not rule out the Wolfpack, and also do not discount Kansas. The Jayhawks are also involved with other forwards, but Cothron seems to be a player than Bill Self and Co. are interested in, and KU's tradition speaks for itself. Cothron is another player whose recruitment is tough to get a good read on, but right now, I would handicap UConn and the leader.

Jordin Mayes, SG, 6'1, Westchester (CA), #69
Favorite: Cal
2nd in L
ine: Utah
3rd in Line: Boston College
Watch Out for: Washington State, Colorado

Mayes has publicly stated that his top three, in order, are Cal, Boston College, and Utah. The fact that BC is the only school he lists on the East Coast makes me think that once he gets a look at Utah, the Utes could climb ahead of the Eagles, which is why I have Al Skinner's program in the third spot. Both schools do have a shot at the combo guard, as Mayes does seem to be willing to go the mid-major route (Utah) and is at least considering going across the country (Boston College), as has already visited the ACC school. Despite that, it appears that Cal will stay in the driver's seat and land the in-state prospect. Mike Montgomery is doing a great job recruiting the class of 2010 and has some quality commits, and Mayes would a nice addition. Washington State and Colorado are a pair of programs to keep an eye out for too. If Mayes decides Cal is not the best fit for him, but he wants to go to a high-major school in the West, those would be his primary options.

Jayvaughn Pinkston, SF, 6'5, Bishop Loughlin (NY), #78
Favorite: Tennessee
2nd in
Line: Marquette
3rd in Line: Arizona
Watch Out for: St. John's, Miami

The sturdy combo forward seems to be considering eight schools at this point in Tennessee, Marquette, Arizona, St. John's, Miami, Villanova, Seton Hall, and Rutgers. The two NJ schools are probably at the bottom of the list, with Tennessee, Marquette, Arizona, and St. John's as the main four. Miami and Villanova are also in play, and should not be counted out. I think UM probably has a bit of a lead on Nova because of the NYC connection that already exists, with Durand Scott '09 and Malcolm Grant on the roster. Location does not seem to be something that is a major factor for Pinkston, who has been in the national spotlight for quite some time. Tennessee made a strong push over the summer and the Vols may well be in the lead for Pinkston, though it is tough to tell which single program is the favorite. Marquette is in great position to get Jayvaughn as well. Both Bruce Pearl and Buzz Williams would love to add the athletic NYC baller to their roster. Arizona is another program with a direct connection to the Big Apple, which is where assistant coach Book Richardson is from. He has already made recruiting inroads there, and St. Raymond's (NY) forward Sidiki Johnson '11 has popped for the Wildcats already. If Pinkston wants to stay local, it appears he will choose Norm Roberts and Co. over VU, RU, and SHU. At one point St. John's was considered to be the leader, but some other programs have made major pushes after Pinkston's great summer. Although there are nearly 10 schools involved, there seem to be four at the top, with six solidly in play.

Carson Desrosiers '10, PF, 6'10, Central Catholic (MA), #91
Favorite: Arizona State
2nd
in Line: Wake Forest
3rd in Line: Marquette

The versatile big man has publicly chopped his list down to just Arizona State, Wake Forest, and Marquette. Right now, it is very tough to tell which way he is leaning. I have gone back and forth between all three schools to decide which one is the leader, and all things considered I feel that the Sun Devils may be in the best position to get Desrosiers. Herb Sendek has been looking for a big man who can run the floor, stretch the D, and hit the trey and his prime target at one point was Will Regan, who is now part of Virginia's big-time class of 2010. Regan's decision to go elsewhere moved Desrosiers to the forefront, and ASU is working hard to get him. The Pac-10 school hasby no means locked him up though. Wake Forest came into the picture late, but has made a strong impression with Carson and was actually the first school he took an official visit to. Dino Gauido has done a fantastic job of relating to recruits, so that could make up for some of the lost time that Wake has had in the process with Desrosiers. Marquette, although third on this list, is in about as good of a position as the other two. This is a very tight race for the big man. If Desrosiers does end up feeling that ASU is too far away—that does seem unlikely—and that Wake came in too late, the Golden Eagles would be his only option. No matter who you have at number one here, you could make a strong case. I would say Arizona State is the favorite right now, but that could change in a hurry.

Jason Morris, SF, 6'5, Hotchkiss School (CT), #98
Favorite: Georgia Tech
2nd in Line: Clemson
3r
d in Line: Georgia
Watch Out for: Stanford

Morris' stock has dropped over the past year or so, but these for schools (Georgia Tech, Clemson, Georgia, and Stanford) have remained committed to recruiting the athletic specimen. Although some programs—Duke, Georgetown, Villanova, UConn, etc.—are no longer really in the picture, these four have maintained a strong position with Morris, who is originally from Georgia, but attends school in Connecticut. Stanford is probably in the back of the pack for two reasons, the first of which is that the Cardinal do not have many spots left and have some players, such as Dwight Powell, above Morris on their list. Secondly, it is the lone one of the four not in the Southeast, and it appears that Morris may want to return back closer to where he is from after spending some years away at Hotchkiss. Georgia Tech is probably in the best shape with Morris. Paul Hewitt has been great with getting Peach State prospects, and although Morris is no longer there, his roots still are. Jason has already taken an official visit to the ACC school and the Yellow Jackets have been involved in his recruitment for quite some time. Clemson looks to be a close second. Oliver Purnell is definitely interested in Morris, and if the Tigers got him, it would be no shock. When all is said and done, it will probably come down to Georgia Tech and Clemson for Morris, but Georgia is not quite out of the picture just yet. It would be great for first year UGA Head Coach Mark Fox to land a prospect from the state originally, and Morris would probably get the chance for some quality playing time early on.

JJ Moore, SF, 6'6, South Kent (CT), #99
Favorite: Louisville
2nd in Line: Pitt
3rd i
n Line: Marquette
Watch Out for: Providence, Miami

In all likelihood JJ Moore will be taking his game to the Big East next year, but that is not a lock. Of the seven primary schools he is considering, there are three (Miami, Florida, and Indiana) that are not in the nation's largest conference. The four Big East schools (Louisville, Pitt, Marquette, and Providence) do seem to be the leaders for Moore. Louisville is the only school Moore has planned an official visit to, while the other three Big East programs are the only schools he has tripped to unofficially thus far. Louisville is considered the favorite, and the fact that Moore has scheduled a trip there already combined with the fact that he would like to get his decision out of the way makes it seem like the Cardinals are in strong position. Pitt has been trying to land a top-notch wing—Cameron Wright '10 is committed to Panthers, so the school does have on in the fold—for a while and has also been trying to tap into New York, which is where Moore is from, so he would make a lot of sense for Jamie Dixon and Co. Marquette is another program that is in the hunt for a number of talented wings in 2010 such as Moore, Pinkston, and Justin Coleman. Keno Davis has been fantastic when it comes to recruiting at Providence, and Moore would be a nice get for him. The Friars should not be ruled out. If Moore does not go to the Big East, Miami might be his choice. The Hurricanes are looking for another wing to go along with Rion Brown in 2010 and, again, have New York connections. When it comes down to it, Rick Pitino will probably end up being the one who gets the pledge from Moore.

Note- all photos are from http://scouthoops.scout.com/
 

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