Dalton Pence | Analyzed Sports
The 2018 basketball recruiting class has seen some interesting developments such as Duke landing four top-10 players (overall top 3) and the emergence of Oregon and LSU in the recruiting realm. However, there are still a handful of highly touted recruits that have yet to announce their decisions. Some of these recruits have the power to help certain teams skyrocket in the team rankings for this class. With that being said, let’s predict their destinations based on what we know now.
#5 in the ESPN 2018 Top 100
Langford, the top shooting guard in the class and the top overall uncommitted player, is down to a final three of Kansas, Indiana, and Vanderbilt. The hiring of Archie Miller has helped the Hoosiers gain ground on the Indiana native. Vanderbilt has enticed Romeo with a potential package deal including fellow 5 star Commodore commits Darius Garland and Simisola Shittu. However, I wouldn’t expect him to make a decision until the draft deadline when Lagerald Vick makes his decision on whether to return to Kansas for his senior season or enter the draft. Jayhawk head coach Bill Self has turned up the heat in pursuit of Langford and the likely departure of Vick could lead Romeo to Lawrence.
#7 in the ESPN 2018 Top 100
Simons had potentially the largest leap in the rankings of any recruit in the class. The one-time Louisville commit has shown interest in schools like Tennessee and NC State. He visited Knoxville recently and plans to visit the Wolfpack in the near future. However, due to his age, there are many experts that believe he may forgo college and enter the 2018 NBA Draft. It could be hard for a team in the last first round to pass up on an explosive, athletic scorer.
Prediction: NBA Draft
#16 in the 2018 ESPN Top 100
Like Simons, Montgomery backed out of his commitment (Auburn) due to ongoing FBI investigations. Since then, the 5-star power forward has been taking his time in his process; he has recently cut his list to 11: Duke, UNC, Georgia, Kentucky, UCLA, Vanderbilt, USC, Wake Forest, Clemson, South Carolina, and Georgetown. The three teams to watch in this are UNC, Duke, and UK. North Carolina and Kentucky might have the edge over Duke considering the Zion Williamson commitment.
#26 in the 2018 ESPN Top 100
Although he de-committed from Arizona back in October, the Wildcats are still in play for the five star PG. Some other schools to watch out for are Villanova and Oklahoma. We have seen what Trae Young has done in the OU system and it could entice Quinerly to follow in his footsteps. Also, he serves as a prototypical ball handler in Jay Wright’s system at Villanova. This is a bit more wide open in terms of there being a favorite, but I’m going with a darkhorse.
#27 in the 2018 ESPN Top 100
Schools like UCLA, California, and Gonzaga seem to be at the forefront to gain the California native’s services. Gonzaga has recently gotten into the mix with 5-star center Moses Brown committing to UCLA recently. Even with that, it is inferred that the Bruins are still the favorite with CAL not far behind. The ability to play the Browns in the same frontcourt would have its doubts but could turn out to be very rewarding.