basketball Edit

Starting Five: Iowa State lands four-star Lindell Wigginton

Iowa State has landed the most highly ranked prospect of the Steve Prohm era in four-star combo guard Lindell Wigginton. Ole Miss may have found a true sleeper in Jamarko Pickett, plus notes on some impending five-star decisions and this weekend's key visitors in a Friday edition of the Starting Five.

1. Iowa State lands huge piece in Wigginton

Lindell Wigginton
Lindell Wigginton (Phenom Hoops Report)

Iowa State is going to lose a lot in the backcourt after this season, notably potential All-American point guard Monte Morris. Because of that, it was important that they land a potential difference-maker and they have done it by landing 2017's No. 40 ranked player Lindell Wigginton.

The 6-foot-1 point guard product who hails from Nova Scotia but plays at powerhouse Mouth of Wilson (Va.) Oak Hill, committed to the Cyclones on Friday according to multiple sources close to the situation.

One of the top scorers in the country, Wigginton is a physically tough and aggressive guard who can play as a primary decision-maker or scorer. He shoots well from deep, he's very creative off the dribble and he'll arrive in college well-seasoned after spending his last two years of high school as part of a very talented four-guard lineup featuring three other four-star prospects in point guard Matt Coleman and shooting guards Devontae Shuler and Ty-Shon Alexander.

Wigginton is the Cyclones' second four-star commitment from 2017, joining wing Terrence Lewis. Also on board is three-star combo guard Darius McNeill.

2. Did Andy Kennedy find another sleeper?

We wrote in September that Ole Miss head coach Andy Kennedy is as good as it gets in the SEC when it comes to identifying and landing under-the-radar talent and it looks like he might have done it again.

The addition of three-star combo forward Jamarko Pickett didn't make huge waves nationally, but the Washington D.C. native has a chance to be one of the biggest steals of the 2017 recruiting cycle.

Pickett burst onto the scene late in the summer because of his ability to shoot, create off the dribble and swing between the power and small forward positions. He is skinny, but he has a nice frame to grow into. All that kept him out of the Rivals150 coming out of the summer was that we had a very limited sampling when comparing him to others.

He's somebody that we're eager to see this winter and could end up a huge steal in a Rebels' class that also includes four-star guard Devontae Shuler and three-star shooter Parker Stewart.

3. Three remain for five-star P.J. Washington

P.J. Washington
P.J. Washington (Nike/Jon Lopez)

There's been a bit of a shuffling in the recruitment of five-star combo forward P.J. Washington.

Originally scheduled to visit Arizona this weekend, Washington and the Wildcats have parted ways and he's now down to a final three of Kentucky, North Carolina and UNLV per his father -- and coach at Henderson (Nev.) Findlay Prep -- Paul Washington, Sr.

Having already taken visits to UK and UNC, Washington will see the campus of UNLV officially on the weekend of Nov. 4.

The elder Washington denied rumors that his son is leaning to Kentucky and said that they are keeping everybody even until they can spend time with Marvin Menzies and the Rebels.

Ranked No. 17 overall in the class of 2017, Washington will sign during the early period, which begins Nov. 9.

4. Five-stars in decision mode

By all indications, five-star wings Troy Brown (No. 12 overall) and Kris Wilkes (No. 18) are in final decision-making mode.

Many sources have indicated to that the 6-foot-6 Brown, a utility guard from Las Vegas (Nev.) Centennial, is closing in on a decision. After making official visits to Alabama, Georgetown, Kansas, Ohio State and Oregon, Brown has apparently asked the coaches recruiting him to allow him a few weeks of quiet in order to reflect on his visits and spend time with his family going over the different situations available to him. Currently, he's a little past the midway point of that time and the thought is that there will start to be movement towards a decision sometime in the middle to latter part of next week.

Brown also has California, UNLV and Arizona on his final list of eight and has seen each of those campuses unofficially. Brown has been rumored to be leaning towards many of his finalists at one point or another and the prevailing thought is that he may stay out West. However, there hasn't been much concrete intel coming in on his recruitment for the past few weeks and he truly appears to be torn on his decision.

As for Wilkes, the 6-foot-8 small forward from Indianapolis (Ind.) North Central is also done with his visits. After seeing Illinois, Indiana and UCLA the versatile wing man is ready to decide and it is looking like a decision could come within the next week or so.

Wilkes raved about his official visit to Illinois and the relationship he has built with the Illini staff, he has been a regular on the Indiana campus since he was in fourth grade and UCLA has come on strong. During the latter stages of his recruitment there have been many rumblings that the Bruins may have edged out in front but it's probably still a little too early to call them a flat out leader.

5. Carter, Sexton and Preston top visitors list

Collin Sexton
Collin Sexton (FIBA)

It's another busy weekend with five-stars Wendell Carter, Collin Sexton and forward Billy Preston among those on the move.

The No. 5 ranked player in the class of 2017, Carter will take his second official visit this weekend to Duke. Carter has already seen Harvard and has additional visits scheduled to home state Georgia and Georgia Tech. A skilled and powerful center, Carter has said that he's interested in a package deal with five-star shooting guard Gary Trent who like Carter is rumored to be a Blue Devils lean and is on campus in Durham. Others expected in Durham include point guard target Matt Coleman (who already visited officially) and key 2018 targets Zion Williamson, Tre Jones and Cameron Reddish.

Ranked No. 7 nationally, Sexton will make an unofficial visit to Alabama for their season opening festivities. An explosive combo guard, Sexton has been indicating that a decision will come in November and behind-the-scenes talk has him rumored to be torn between the Crimson Tide and Kansas. If that's the case, then this unofficial visit (he's already seen Bama and Kansas officially) could be big. Kansas had head coach Bill Self plus two assistants in to see Sexton earlier this week. Alabama had hoped to get four-star shooting guard John Petty (who visits Kentucky next week) on campus, but it doesn't look like he will make it.

No. 8 Billy Preston will be at Indiana this weekend. He's taken recent official visits to Kansas and Syracuse and the skilled forward appears to be really enjoying the recruiting process. Indiana should have several visitors on hand with 2018 five-star point guard Darius Garland actually having already visited on Thursday. Other notables include 2018 Rivals150 members Musa Jallow and Robert Phinisee.

Four-star power forward Deng Gak is actually fitting in two official visits this week. The 6-foot-9 power forward from Australia who attends Blairstown (N.J.) Blair Academy is finishing up a visit to Florida and will head to Kansas from Gainesville. He's already visited Miami and the Hurricanes may be the slight favorite heading down the home stretch. Gak's teammates Anthony Mack, a three-star wing, and Zach Kent, a three-star big man, will visit Georgia and Northwestern. Kansas will also be hosting five-star point guard Trae Young who has already seen Kentucky, Oklahoma and Texas Tech.

N.C. State has a big weekend with four-star shooting guard Charles O'Bannon making his visit as will three-star forward Nicolas Claxton. Committed Rivals150 guard Thomas Allen will be in town as will others like Zion Williamson and 2019 five-stars Juwan Gary and Christian Brown.

Maryland should have four-star combo guard target Darryl Morsell on campus for at least the fourth time this fall. Syracuse is expecting point guard target Quade Green to take another visit and 2018 four-star J'Raan Brooks is a key visitor at Stanford. Four-star senior guard Daejon Davis finishes his official visits with a trip to Washington.

Four-star forward Lance Thomas takes his official visit to Louisville and Xavier is expecting a crowded house with 2018 Rivals150 prospects Ayo Dosunmu, Trevion Williams, Eric Hunter and Jerome Hunter expected to be on hand.