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Cassidy's Takeaways: EYBL in Orlando

Caleb Foster
Caleb Foster (Rivlas.com)

ORLANDO, Fla. – The first live period of 2022 is officially underway, and college coaches have hit the road to recruit. That sort of thing creates news, obviously, and Rivals.com was on hand at the fist Nike EYBL event of the year to track where the recruitments of America's top prospects might be headed. Below, national recruiting analyst Rob Cassidy shares some of the news and notes that came out of the night that was in Central Florida.

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Commitment breakdown: Mgbako is latest five-star to choose Duke

2022 Rankings: Rivals150 | Team | Position

2023 Rankings: Rivals150

2024 Rankings: Top 40

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CALEB FOSTER TO MAKE CLASSIFICATION DECISION SOON 

The Caleb Foster reclassification saga should be officially coming to a close shortly, as the will-he-or-won’t-he questions will be put to bed following an upcoming meeting between new Duke head coach Jon Scheyer and Foster’s family. A specific timetable has not been set, but Foster was confident in throwing around the word “soon” on Friday evening.

“We’re all going to get together and talk and decide really soon,” Foster said following his EYBL game. “We’re just finding time to shut down and talk about it before we decide.”

The decision in front of Duke sophomore Jeremy Roach may figure into Foster’s eventual move, as whether or not Roach will return to Durham next year still seems less than certain. Foster declined to say whether or not that’s the reason for his hesitancy but did make one thing clear: He’ll be attending Duke despite rumors that he considered following former Blue Devil assistant Nolan Smith to his new post at Louisville.

A change of heart was never an option.

“Those rumors were probably just because Nolan recruited me, but I’m sure I’m 100-percent committed to Duke,” Foster said on Friday. “I’m just looking forward to getting there.

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FIVE-STAR RONALD HOLLAND PLANING OFFICIAL VISITS

Ronald Holland
Ronald Holland (Rivals.com)

UCLA has prioritized Texas-based wing Ron Holland and the five-star prospect has certainly taken notice.

“They’re definitely recruiting me the hardest,” Holland said on Friday. “I saw [UCLA head coach Mick Cronin] here today, but he told me he was going to be coming.”

Holland will reciprocate the love he’s feeling in the form of an official visit to Westwood on May 12, but that’s not the only trip the Texas-based star is planning. So while he’s nowhere near making a decision, his recruitment is starting to take real shape

“Everything else is still being planned out right now, but I have some things in mind,” Holland said. “I plan to go to Oregon, Houston and Kentucky. I know that.”

Kentucky is the one school on Holland's visit itinerary that has yet to make things official with an offer. The 6-foot-8 wing expects that to come in time, however, and is confident his relationship with the Wildcats will evolve.

“I think Kentucky wants to bring me out there before the offer,” he said. “They’ve been talking to my mom.”

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CHICAGO POINT GUARD NAMES TOP THREE

One of the top point guards in the 2023 class, Darrin Ames has plenty of offers to his name and is collecting more high-major interest by the month. As things stand, however, there are three schools that lead the way in the race to secure his letter of intent.

Marquette, Kansas State and Illinois are my top three right now,” Ames said following his Friday night game in Orlando.

Marquette and Illinois have been heavily involved with Ames for some time, with K-State being the newcomer to the conversation. The Wildcats may be new to Ames’ list, but the driving force behind their arrival is simple.

“Coach [Jerome] Tang was recruiting me when he was at Baylor, so when he got the job at K-State he just kept recruiting me there. He instantly offered me when he got that job. I like him. I’m going to go check it out.”

Ames, who is currently ranked as the No. 45 prospect in the country, plans to visit Marquette next weekend and hopes to set dates for trips to K-State and Illinois in the near future. New schools are expected to join his recruitment this offseason, as he plays the grassroots circuit with Chicago’s Mac Irvin Fire EYBL squad.