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Class of 2014 breakdown: SEC

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MORE: Class of 2014 Rivals150 | Team rankings
It should come as no surprise at this point the John Calipari signed
the highest rated class in the SEC to join him at Kentucky. He's done
it ever since joining Big Blue Nation in the spring of 2009. What seems to be
changing though is the amount of quality prospects coming into other programs in
the SEC. If the 2014 class is any indication, there will be several schools with
the potential to win big in the SEC.
1 Kentucky (2)
2 Florida (6)
3 LSU (23)
4 Missouri (27)
5 Alabama (29)
6 Vanderbilt (30)
7 Tennessee
8 South Carolina
9 Arkansas
10 Texas A&M
11 Ole Miss
12 Mississippi State
13 Auburn
14 Georgia
By the numbers
It's always a good sign when almost half the teams in a given conference sign
recruiting classes ranked among the top 30 nationally. That's what happened in
the SEC this year. Following one of the better classes in recent memory,
Kentucky finishes the early signing period ranked second nationally. Joining
them in the top 30 overall are Florida (No. 6), LSU (No. 23),
Missouri (No. 27), Alabama (No. 29), and Vanderbilt
(No. 30).
The SEC as a whole received signatures from 24 prospects ranked in the 2014
Rivals150 as well as four-star JUCO point guard Josh Gray who inked
with LSU. Kentucky signee Trey Lyles is the top-ranked prospect headed
to the SEC this year at No. 8 overall. He's joined by fellow Kentucky signee
Karl Towns (No. 11) and Florida signee Devin Robinson (No. 20)
as the only five-star prospects signing with SEC schools. In total, 12 four-star
prospects in the Rivals 150 picked SEC schools with Florida signee
Brandone Francis (No. 26) being the highest ranked. The last nine Rivals150 members
come in as three-star prospects with Arkansas signee Anton Beard
leading the way ranked at No. 110 in the Rivals150.
Things to keep an eye on
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It's always
hard to have next after greatness, whether it's a coach taking over for another
legendary coach or a great player following in the footsteps of another great
player. The same can be said in regards to recruiting classes, especially when
referring to Kentucky. It's going to be interesting to see how the Wildcats'
2014 class compares to their fabulous 2013 class. Trey Lyles and Karl Towns rank
as five-star prospects and ensure that Kentucky's front-court will remain a
strength going forward. Tyler Ulis gives the Wildcats a high-level
floor general and Devin Booker can shoot with the best of them. It's
unfair to compare any class to last year's Kentucky class, but Big Blue Nation
will be just fine with the class they signed during the early signing period.
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Few coaches
in the country have recruited better perimeter players over the past few years
than Billy Donovan. That trend continued in the 2014 class. The gem of
the Gators early signees is five-star small forward Devin Robinson out of
Virginia. He's a good bet to be next in a long line of Florida perimeter players
to play in the NBA. He's coming to Gainesville alongside Brandone Francis, an
ultra-talented combo guard from right in the Gators backyard in Jacksonville,
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Johnny JonesClick and Chris Chiozza, a small but electrifying point guard out of Memphis.Here to view this Link. has a well-earned reputation as being one of the better recruiters in
the country. It all started back when he was an assistant coach under Dale Brown
at LSU when he successfully recruited Shaquille O'Neal to Baton Rouge. Before
coming full circle back to LSU as head coach, Jones brought in former five-star
Tony Mitchell while head coach at North Texas. His first class back at LSU last
year consisted of in-state five-star power forward Jarell Martin along with two
more four-star prospects from out of state. His 2014 class is headlined by one
of the biggest prospects in the country, four-star center Elbert Robinson from Dallas, Texas, who stands at 6'11 and weighs in the
neighborhood 300 lbs. Just this week, the Tigers received a letter of intent
from four-star JUCO point guard Josh Gray to round out another terrific class on
the Bayou. A Rivals150 player out of high school, Gray had a very good freshman
year at Texas Tech and is averaging over 40 points per game to start off his
sophomore season of JUCO ball.
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receiving some tough news in the off-season that one top returning guard was
declared ineligible and another decided to leave school and turn pro,
Vanderbilt's staff knew they needed to hit the recruiting trail hard trying to
add some fire-power to their back-court. They did just that. Four-star guards
Wade Baldwin and Matthew Fisher-Davis both had
big summers and should provide some immediate help on the wing. Riley LaChance is a high level shooter who has toughness.
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shooting has been an issue for Alabama the past few years, but that should be
changing over the next couple years with the help of the Crimson Tide's 2014
class. Justin Coleman,
Devin Mitchell, and
Riley Norris are all known for their ability to score. Most importantly for
Anthony Grant, they are all known primarily for their ability to
stretch defenses with their deep jump shooting.
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One of the
most intriguing players headed to the SEC is Missouri signee Namon Wright. A top 100 player with good size, plenty of scoring tools and
confidence in his game, Wright could be an early contributor. A streaky jump
shooter with some mid range game, Wright has been a bit inconsistent with his
play. If he can iron out those inconsistencies, he has the talent to perform at
the level of a top 50 type player.
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Just before
the start of the signing period, Texas A&M closed on combo guard
Sidy Ndir. During August, Ndir played with Team Africa at Adidas Nations and
looked like a potential contributor at the SEC level. Ndir plays fast, he's
athletic and he's pretty fearless. He'll need some help with his decision
making, but his hair on fire style and enthusiasm on the floor bode well for his
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