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Commitment breakdown: Auburn lands five-star Yohan Traore

Auburn added the crown jewel of its 2022 recruiting class on Thursday night, when former LSU commit Yohan Traore made the call for Bruce Pearl’s program. Traore, who backed off his pledge to LSU just a few backs ago, gives Auburn three commitments this cycle and provides the program with another potential pro. Below, has a look at what the big man brings to the table as well as what it means for the big picture.


A French import, Traore was just bursting onto the American basketball scene at this time last year. He shot up the rankings quickly because of his 6-foot-10 frame, agility and knack for finishing around the basket. He’s since developed a nice shooting touch from mid-range and an average stroke from deep, which keeps defenders honest. That said, his calling card is his offensive game inside the paint, where he gets a lot of dunks and has developed an array of post moves. He also runs well and is effective in transition. Traore is an effective rebounder that creates second chance points and a willing defender, though he sometimes gets lost on that end of the floor.


Second chances are wonderful things, and Auburn capitalized on the one it was handed when LSU’s Will Wade was fired and Traore backed off his pledge to the university. It’s not easy to land a difference maker this late in the cycle, but Bruce Pearl has done it here. The Tigers will put a player (freshman Jabari Smith) in the NBA Draft lottery this year and now have a prospect in the fold that could follow in Smith's footsteps a year or two down the road. Success compounds in recruiting because of this kind of thing, so the momentum the Tigers are building shouldn’t be ignored. Traore, when paired with 6-foot-6 guard Chance Westry, gives this haul length and athleticism in spades.