The late signing period begins today so it is a natural time for the latest update to the 2017 team rankings. John Calipari and Kentucky remain in control of the top spot, but there has been plenty of movement behind them.
Overview: In Washington, John Calipari has found a big-time competitor who can play at the three or the four, pound the glass and score from the mid range. Richards is a mobile big man who protects the glass, runs the floor, rebounds and scores opportunistically. Vanderbilt has length, size and can play the three or the four while Green is a traditional point guard who gets others involved first and makes tremendous decision. Alexander is a guard with size and excellent floor vision who can play the point or shooting guard while Baker can stretch the floor with his shooting.
Overview: UCLA made a major score pulling the versatile Wilkes out of the state of Indiana. What Hands lacks in physical strength he makes up for with extreme quickness and an ability to slip past defenders via the dribble. Riley is a long armed, skilled and tough post scorer while Hill is a hard working and athletic power forward who can run the floor. Smith adds depth and length on the wing. A barrel chested jump shooter, Ball is the younger brother of freshman point guard Lonzo Ball.
Overview: Sean Miller and his staff have landed the second ranked playerr in the class in Ayton. The seven-footer is a polished offensive player who should be ready to go the moment he steps foot in Tucson. Randolph is a long and rangy shooter who can fill it up from deep and has plenty of room to expand his game. Lee is a high energy insider who rebounds and runs the floor and in Barcello, they have a tough as nails sharp shooter who can run the point or play off the ball.
Overview: In Sexton, Avery Johnson has landed an explosive scorer who plays with swagger and energy. Petty is a homegrown wing guard with versatility and size while Jones is a lanky shooter with great size and deep range and will arrive in Tuscaloosa with significant upside. Reese is a skilled four man who has good agility and a good frame to build on in the weight room. Smith is the x-factor of the bunch given that he’s raw offensively but has top end SEC athleticism.
Overview: Carter will be used similar to how Jahlil Okafor was, maybe not quite as skilled with his back to the basket but a better defender. Trent is a physically tough and skilled shooting guard who may be even more dangerous as a post scorer than a jump shooter. O’Connell is a high upside wing with athleticism, a clean looking jumper and an aggressive attitude.
Overview: The Longhorns hop they have their point guard of the future in the slick passing Coleman. A bouncy and long-armed four-man from Minnesota, Sims is a frontcourt player with huge upside. He cleans the glass, has great hands and a rapidly expanding offensive game. Febres was one of the biggest surprises of the summer and is a big jump shooter with deep range. Hamm is another big time athlete who can finish in transition and help stretch defenses as a mobile four man and capable shot maker.
Overview: The Cardinals weren’t first to the party on Williams, but their aggressive pursuit of him during July paid huge dividends. Williams is a shot blocker on the defensive end and a jump shooter with size and a great frame to work with on the offensive side of the ball. Perry is a physical point guard capable of pushing the tempo and providing the type of defensive pressure that Pitino covets while Nwora can stretch defenses while playing on the wing or as a stretch four man. Thomas has the physical tools to far outplay his ranking.
Overview: Xavier has it rolling on the recruiting trail and has put together an impressive group of five. Scruggs can play all three perimeter positions and has the tools to be one of the best players in the Big East. A do-it-all wing, Marshall was one of the summer’s most productive players. Harden is a jump shooter with good size and athleticism while Ridder is another shooter with size and deep range while Jones is a space eating big man that will need to develop.
Overview: In Porter, the Tigers have landed the best player in the country. He’s big, he’s athletic and he has an incredibly high level of skill. Roberts missed much of his senior season to injury but is a big time athlete with toughness. Formerly committed to Washington with Porter, Harris is a floor general with big upside.
10. WESTERN KENTUCKY
Overview: The Hilltoppers have pulled off the biggest coup in 2017 recruiting by landing Robinson. A high-flying center who is arguably the best shot blocker in the country, he’s starting to show off huge potential on the offensive end as well. Anderson is a lengthy playmaker who can score from the wing or play stretches as a primary ball handler. In Hilltopper classes of the past, Hollingsworth would be a headliner because of his off the dribble scoring.
Overview: A scorer with tremendous size and skill, Okpala is perhaps the most improved senior in America and has huge upside. Davis is a quick and versatile guard with size. Da Silva is a German big with skill while White is an Australian combo guard who can really shoot from deep.
Overview: The Hurricanes pulled off the one of the biggest surprises of the early signing period when they landed the explosive, high-scoring Walker. In Lykes, they have a small but electrifying point guard who will excite the crowds. Gak is a long and skilled four-man who simply needs to add strength.
Overview: In the five-star Brown, Dana Altman has landed one of the most versatile backcourt players in the country and he should be able to play multiple positions. Bailey is an athletic wing scorer with upside while Kigab is a tough guy who will likely play some four in Oregon’s pressing attack.
Overview: Ed Cooley and the Friars have landed themselves an outstanding trio of players. Ashton-Langford is a big point guard who excels in transition and sets the table. Watson is an under the rim, but skilled and crafty, power forward with touch and scoring ability. Dickens is raw offensively, but he’s big, has great length and is an athlete who can run the floor.
Overview: A versatile, athletic and tough forward, Preston will be able to play both the high and low roles when Kansas wants to run Bill Self’s famed high-low action. Garrett is a tall and lengthy point guard who will play multiple spots on the perimeter in Lawrence.
16. FLORIDA STATE
Overview: The Seminoles have themselves a very strong and physical group. The hope is that Obiagu can anchor the defense and be a premier college rim protector. Gray is a versatile, playmaking four-man with a bit of Draymond Green in his game while Wilkes is a big-time shooter from deep and excellent passer. Trimble is a microwave scorer with athleticism while Polite is a strong wing with some skill.
17. MICHIGAN STATE
Overview: Izzo and his staff did some heavy lifting to make up ground on the others involved to land Jackson. Jackson is highly skilled, keeps getting bigger and is a full year young for his class with Chris Bosh-style game. Tillman is a strong and physical interior player who has the tools to be the typical Spartan enforcer.
18. VIRGINIA TECH
Overview: A product of Canada who has starred since moving to the United States for high school, Alexander-Walker is a versatile guard with size. A natural scorer from spots all over the floor, Alexander-Walker is also a clever enough ball handler and passer to spend some minutes as a point guard. Bede’s middle name might as well be intangibles. He’s a true extension of the coach on the floor, a leader and a winner. Horne is a scrappy and tough forward with upside.
Overview: Samuels looks to be the perfect replacement for senior Josh Hart. He’s an emotional leader who excels from the mid range and attacking the basket. Cosby-Roundtree is a local post player with a junkyard dog mentality. He’s a bit on the slender side, but has quickness and athleticism in the lane that makes him a factor on the glass. A capable scorer, Gillespie is a local who can play either the one or the two.
Commits: PF Chuma Okeke (No. 39), PG Davion Mitchell (No. 60).
Overview: The Tigers lost a big piece of their 2017 class when five-star center Austin Wiley enrolled early making him a 2016 prospect. Chuma Okeke is a versatile forward with mid range skill while Mitchel is an explosive floor general.
21. TEXAS A&M
Overview: Billy Kennedy and his staff were in early on Flagg and their efforts were rewarded with a commitment from the versatile, skilled and athletic small forward with size. Starks has a big summer catapulting to four-star status and he can get to the rim with the best of them. Chandler is an athletic combo guard who scores in bunches while Jasey has SEC size and athleticism.
Overview: By luring Ballock out of the state of Kansas, Creighton pulled off one of the bigger surprises in early recruiting. He can shoot and has a high basketball IQ to go with size and athleticism. Alexander is another shooting guard with range who puts up points in flurries. An import from Australia, Epperson lacks strength but has skill and a big upside.
23. IOWA STATE
Overview: Wigginton is a big-time scorer who hails from Canada but has made his reputation at mighty Oak Hill on the high school level. Lewis is a tough and physical wing slasher while McNeill is a bouncy perimeter scorer and driver who has a big upside.
Overview: Tad Boyle and his staff spent the last year chasing Schwartz, a Colorado product, everywhere he went and they’ll love his size and strength on the wing. Bey is a bouncy and tough-minded combo forward who is a high-level rebounder and has really improved his offense over the last year. Battey looks like a left tackle recruit but wields a smooth jump shot, high level of skill and unconventional game that makes him a load.
Overview: A Norman native, Young is a big time shooter from deep and a huge recruiting win over conference rival Kansas. Manek is a slender big with shooting touch while the Finland native Pöllä adds size and strength in the post.
Overview: A McDonald’s All-American, O’Bannon is a big time scorer who likes to let it fly from deep. Usher is a big and physical wing who loves to drive and will add toughness. Uyaelunmo is a raw but athletic big man who can learn on the job.
Overview: A mobile big man who can stretch defenses with his outside shooting, Reuvers looks like the kind of skilled big man that Badger fans have become accustomed to seeing. Davison is a football quarterback who brings his toughness and deft shooting touch to the program. An in=state product, King is a wing scorer who should have a jumper and body ready for the Big Ten.
28. NORTH CAROLINA
Overview: The nephew of former UNC star point guard Raymond Felton, Felton oozes natural ability. He is a natural scorer off the dribble who will likely play both the one and the two in college. In Platek, the Heels hope they’ve found a guy who can help soften defenses with his jump shooting. In Huffman and Manley the Heels have landed a pair of developmental big men with size and the ability to clean the glass.
Overview: Mike White has landed himself a great core for future Gator teams. Johnson is an athletic and hard playing forward while Ballard is a versatile wing who thrives in transition. Stokes is a big bodied post with touch while Okauru is a big time athlete who just needs some polish.
Overview: A relative newcomer to basketball, Gafford is a promising homegrown big man who can run the floor, has great hands and shows touch on the interior. Garland is a physically tough and aggressive wing scorer with size and a college ready body. Seemingly out of the “40 minutes of Hell” prototype, Hall is a long and athletic wing who makes hustle plays and competes.
Overview: Nembhard is a strong and physical scorer from the two-guard spot. His specialty is his mid-range game but he handles the ball enough to help out some at the point. Samuel is one of the best shot blockers in the class and has legitimate Big 12 size and athleticism. Pierce is an athletic junior college four-man with some skill while Mayen is an Australian wing with upside.
Overview: Fernando is big and strong and has significantly upgraded his skill level during a prep school year. Morsell is a tough Baltimore kid who scores off the dribble and plays hard on both ends.
33. ARIZONA STATE
Overview: An athletic forward from Rhode Island, Lawrence is a slasher who has enough size to play some at the four in a small ball lineup. Martin is a point guard who plays with speed and effort. Lake will help add needed size and athleticism to the Sun Devils front line.
Overview: A big bodied guard, Eastern can play all three perimeter positions in the Big Ten. Wheeler is an above average athlete with huge upside while Haarms adds more size on the interior and Stefanovic could develop into a knockdown shooter.
Overview: Garza is a big, mean and skilled post who can score on the block. The son of Fran McCaffery, McCaffery is a wing who can add versatility while Nunge is a thin forward with athleticism and a chance to really explode a few years into his career.