football Edit

News and notes from signing day

THE LIST: Class of 2014 Rivals150
Wednesday is the opening of college basketball's first national signing period. National basketball analyst Eric Bossi and contributing national analysts Corey Albertson and Dan McDonald will keep a running blog of news and notes from day.
Texas Tech commit will wait to sign
One of Texas Tech's three early commitments will not sign a letter of intent during the early signing period.
Three-star point guard Keenan Evans from Richardson (Texas) Berkner has elected to wait until the spring before he makes his commitment 100% official.
Late last week a coach tipped Rivals.com off to information that Evans had been in contact with other programs and telling them that while he is committed to the Red Raiders, he wouldn't be signing and is open to taking other visits.
It is a situation similar to many football players who commit and then take other visits. Reached by Mike Graham of RedRaiderSports.com and asked about his signing plans, Evans confirmed that he will indeed wait until the spring to sign. Evans did not mention any other schools of interest.
Evans unwillingness to sign early despite being committed puts Tubby Smith and his staff in a bit of a bind. Evans says that he is solid, but if he backs out the Red Raiders could be in a bad place trying to find a point guard late.
The Red Raiders other two commitments Justin Gray and Zach Smith both signed earlier in the day on Wednesday. --Bossi
Long Beach State lands sleeper
Towards the end of July when most players looked to be totally gassed, three-star Deontae North looked like he was just getting warmed up.
Wednesday, Long Beach State scored a nice recruiting win when they snatched up the 6-foot-4 wing from Corona (Calif.) Centennial.
Playing in the summer with the Compton Magic, North impressed with his ability to play both ends of the floor. He is an aggressive driver of the basketball, makes key jumpers and has all of the tools to be a big time defensive player. North looks like a potential multi-year starter and should have an excellent career playing for the 49'ers. --Bossi
Huntington Prep trio will all sign, Lyle remains open
Huntington (W.Va.) Prep coach Rob Fulford told Rivals.com that his three committed seniors, Angel Delgado, Josh Perkins and Jalen Lindsey all planned on signing their letters of intent on Wednesday.
Delgado is a four-star power forward who is part of an excellent fall recruiting class at Seton Hall. Perkins is a four-star point guard who went the small school route by choosing Gonzaga and Lindsey is a four-star small forward who will sign with Providence.
While the three signed their letters of intent on Wednesday, the school will not be having an official signing day ceremony until the end of the week on Friday afternoon.
Just because these three are signing today doesn't mean the recruiting season is over for Huntington Prep.
Five-star guard Jaquan Lyle is still on the board and considering several schools, while Fulford also confirmed with Rivals yesterday that four-star class of 2015 wing Montaque Gill-Caesar is strongly considering a move to the senior class of 2014. --Albertson
Johnson confirms change in plans
Five-star small forward Stanley Johnson has confirmed to Rivals.com that will announce his college decision on Friday afternoon.
The No. 3 player in the class of 2014, Johnson had intended to wait until the spring to make his decision
The product of Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei told Rivals.com that he just had his change of heart within the last week and didn't see any reason to wait.
Once again, Johnson's finalists are Arizona, Kentucky, Florida, Oregon and USC with Arizona considered the leader over Kentucky and USC heading to the finish line. Johnson also denied a report that he was at USC's home game on Tuesday night. --Bossi
Four-star has signing day change of heart
It doesn't happen all that often in hoops, but there was a signing day flip involving four-star big man Payton Dastrup.
After committing to Ohio State just a little bit under a week ago, the No. 100 player in the country had a change of heart.
The Mesa (Ariz.) Mountain View big man will instead sign with BYU per his father David. A member of the Church of Latter Day Saints, Dastrup will still take his two year Service Mission before enrolling in Provo.
Vanderbilt's class is official
Down in Nashville, the No. 26 class in the country is official. Vanderbilt now owns signed letters of intent from all three of their Rivals150 commitments.
No. 92 Wade Baldwin, No. 105 Matthew Fisher-Davis and No. 147 Riley LaChance all put pen to paper this morning.
Heavy with perimeter players, the Commodores class should give them some good options to help spread the floor. Both Fisher-Davis have deep range and true jumpers while Baldwin could end up a slashing combo guard and has the tools to be a defensive stopper. --Bossi
Pierce will decide Friday
He isn't quite a Rivals150 prospect, but three-star center Satchel Pierce has become a commodity that high major coaches are seeking to land.
The Akron (Ohio) native is originally a class of 2013 prospect that reclassified and has spent the last two years at the Saltsburg (Pen.) Kiski School.
Pierce has confirmed to Rivals.com that he will make his college decision on Friday evening, when he will choose between Marquette, Miami and Pittsburgh.
Pierce has officially visited both Miami and Pittsburgh, but has not made an official trip to Marquette. The center was scheduled to go to Milwaukee this weekend, and then make a decision by the end of the fall signing period, but had to cancel that visit due to a team scrimmage.
Now that he has canceled that visit, Pierce has announced that he is ready to make a decision. The Golden Eagles are not out of the running, and neither is Miami, but Pittsburgh is probably at least a slight favorite headed into Friday.
With his height and wide body, look for Pierce to be a contributing big man and role player who can really take up space in the middle defensively. If Pierce can continue to hone his conditioning, he could one day be a force on the glass on either end. -- Albertson
Shift in plans for Johnson & Winslow?
All of the sudden, two major recruitments that looked like they would go past the early signing period are looking like they could end sooner than later. Word has started to circulate that five-stars Stanley Johnson and Justise Winslow will end up setting announcements for the early signing period.
Even has recently as last week, Johnson indicated to Rivals.com that has intention was still to sign early. However, Tuesday night ESPN ran a crawl across the bottom of their screen indicating he would sign on Friday. Sources close to the No. 3 player in 2014's recruitment have disputed the claim while Johnson himself has yet to confirm or deny.
The 6-foot-7 small forward at Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei has been considered a lean to Arizona with Kentucky and USC considered the Wildcats biggest competitors.
Although he has yet to set anything concrete, sources are now indicating that Winslow will most likely sign during the early period.
The 6-foot-6 wing at Houston (Texas) St. John's has been maintaining radio silence about his visits and intentions for a few months now but he should have the information to decide.
Winslow took trips to Arizona, Duke, Florida Stanford, UCLA and Texas A&M since the summer.
It will be interesting to see if Tyus Jones and Jahlil Okafor end up at Duke. If they do that will likely make the Blue Devils the favorites as Winslow has talked in the past about possibly packaging himself with his teammates from USA Basketball. -- Bossi
Joke isn't on UAB
Rivals150 power forward William Lee from Plantersville (Ala.) Dallas County kept his recruitment really close to the vest from start to finish. Very little reliable information leaked out about which schools were in best shape for a signature from "HaHa".
The 6-foot-8, 200-pound prospect took official visits to Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi State, SMU, and UAB in recent months, but most felt Alabama, Georgia, and SMU were the main players in his recruitment.Lee had different plans.
On Tuesday night, he surprised many by spurning the high-major offers and deciding to take his talents to UAB.
"I'm choosing UAB," Lee told Rivals.com. "I wanted to stay closer to home and I liked the coaches at UAB."
Lee says he'll be signing his letter of intent at a ceremony at his school on Wednesday afternoon. He joins a terrific recruiting class for the Blazers that includes top in-state prospects Jarvis Calhoun and Lewis Sullivan along with one of the better power forwards in Georgia, Chris Cokley. -- McDonald
Decision coming soon for Welsh
One of the top remaining big men on the board is Los Angeles (Calif.) Loyola big man Thomas Welsh. Late Tuesday night the No. 52 player in 2014 told Rivals.com that his recruitment was nearing an end.
"Nothing is really set yet," Welsh told Rivals.com. "I will most likely decide over the next couple of days."
A four-star center, the seven-footer is one of the most improved players in the country and he'll choose from three finalists.
"It's California, Stanford and UCLA," said Welsh. "I'm very lucky to be in the situation I'm in." -- Bossi
Hamilton hasn't set signing plans
Ever since his older brother Isaac backed out of his letter of intent to play at UTEP to enroll at UCLA, there have been rumors that five-star shooting guard Daniel Hamilton could back out of his commitment to Connecticut.
Reached via text late Tuesday night, the 6-foot-6 product of Los Angeles (Calif.) St. John Bosco said that he wasn't sure of when he would sign his letter of intent and that he had to talk it over with his family.
Hamilton did not address rumors that he could look to join his brother -- who was a five-star prospect and McDonald's All-American in 2013 -- in Westwood next season.
Until it comes from Hamilton or a member of his family that he isn't solid to UConn, Rivals.com considers him firmly in Kevin Ollie's camp as the cornerstone of the Huskies 2014 recruiting efforts. -- Bossi
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