23 September 2009

Recruiting buzz on the interwebs

In the confluence of JerShon Cobb's signing last week and the beginning of fall practice, the perennial autumnal renewal of optimism has reached new heights for NU men's basketball. Yes, Carmody Court has been joined by a legion of voices declaring THIS IS THE YEAR that NU makes the BIG DANCE!

There is plenty of time to get into all that once we get to see how the team actually looks this non-conference season. Instead, I'd like to stoke the recruiting buzz that has the interwebs aflame.

Per Rivals, NU has offers out to SEVEN top 50 prospects in the Class of 2011 and NINE total prospects (all of which are in the top 150). How many NU lands is subject to debate, but this is a quantum leap in NU's recruiting profile. Here is a recap of NU's recruiting targets by position (overall national rank):

Marshall Plumlee (41)
Nnana Egwu (48)

Julian Royal* (30)
Keaton Miles (43)
Rod Days (115)
Henry Brooks (129)

Shannon Scott* (12)
Dai-Jon Parker* (17)
Chasson Randle (45)

Frankly, I am a bit stunned by this list. How many of the top 50 could even get past NU admissions? I doubt it's many more than 7, though I admittedly haven't researched it. Be that as it may, I am so used to seeing baby steps or two steps forward and one step back that this gigantic shift is shocking. I am reminded of Gary Barnett's analogy of the breakout Rose Bowl year where he wrote in his book (and I paraphrase from foggy memories) that he had been priming the pump for some time and all of a sudden the water just came gushing out that fateful fall of 1995. Perhaps that is what is happening with NU men's basketball recruiting.

* denotes a "Georgia Peach"