Three-Point Play: Chet Holmgren, decommits, Kennedy Chandler
Does a conversation need to be had about making a switch at the top of the 2021 rankings? National Analyst Eric Bossi takes a look at the top of 2021, some key decommits in the class of 2020 and five-star point guard Kennedy Chandler’s visits in today’s edition of Three-Point-Play.
Starting Five: Schools feeling good after USA Basketball
1. COULD CHET HOLMGREN BE NO. 1 IN 2021?
Now that I’ve had a day to travel, rest up and take some time away from last weekend’s USA Basketball minicamp, one thought keeps running through my head: Chet Holmgren deserves serious consideration for the top spot in the 2021 class.
Look, saying that a guy who already ranks No. 4 nationally should be considered for the top spot in his class ranking isn’t exactly going out on a limb. I get that. And, of those ranked ahead of him only current No. 3 Patrick Baldwin Jr. – who played quite well himself, as he knocked down one deep shot after another -- was in attendance. It should also be noted that No. 5 Jabari Smith was outstanding as well.
But back to Holmgren for a minute because he was ridiculous over the weekend. He’s very skinny and there are concerns about his strength, but I’m more focused on what he can do and the simple fact is that 7-footers who can handle, shoot and protect the rim like him don’t come along often. Not only that, he’s got a confidence about him that is tough to deny.
I’m looking forward to see what current No. 1 Jonathan Kuminga and No. 2 Paolo Banchero have in store for us this season. But, if it was purely up to me, I’d be real tempted to go ahead and move Holmgren to No. 1 sooner than later.
2. MICHIGAN STATE AND NEBRASKA HIT BY DECOMMITMENTS
I want to start with Michigan State because the loss of in-state point guard Jalen Terry is the bigger blow. Tom Izzo and the Spartans have to replace Cassius Winston next year and figured that between current sophomore Foster Loyer, Terry and recently committed four-star combo guard A.J. Hoggard, they could make it work. Sliding a scorer like Rocket Watts over from the two is an options as well. But now, they are out the guy who is the best of the bunch for the job.
Just as hurtful as losing Terry is losing him this late in the process. He’s been committed for some time now and there aren’t many options that could replace him and even if there were, jumping in this late would be tough. There’s no silver lining to this. Well, actually there is. Izzo is still the coach in East Lansing and if anybody can recover from this his, he will. In fact I’m pretty sure of it.
As for where Terry may lean, we’ll have to see. Iowa (who has since landed Ahron Ulis), Iowa State, Mississippi State (who has landed Deivon Smith) and Missouri made up his finalists back when he committed and given the lack of remaining high quality point guards many will soon be calling.
Now to Nebraska, which lost four-star D’Andre Davis. This one isn’t quite as big of a surprise other than it not happening sooner. Davis, who is from Indiana, had committed a year ago while Tim Miles was the coach. A slashing, athletic player, his style of play may not have been the greatest of fits for new coach Fred Hoiberg. With Hoiberg facing a scholarship crunch while trying to rebuild Nebraska in his style, this is probably a case where there aren’t hard feelings on either side. The Huskers get a scholarship and now Davis can go and find a better fit and commit to a coach who actually recruited him.
3. FIVE-STAR POINT GUARD KENNEDY CHANDLER SETS VISITS
One of the most heavily recruited players in the country regardless of class, five-star junior point guard Kennedy Chandler is making the rules work in his favor.
The Memphis area floor general just set official visits to Tennessee (10/25), Syracuse (11/5), Ole Miss (11/15), Florida State (2/2/2020) and Michigan (2/15).
I checked in with the playmaker’s father Kylan, who told me the visits shouldn’t be taken as an indication that a decision is imminent. He told me that the family is trusting the process and that most likely another round of visits will take place when Chandler is a senior. Among the others thought to be heavily in the mix here include, Arkansas, Duke and Memphis just to name a few and I wouldn’t look for a decision any time soon.