Friday, June 24, 2005

I told you not to get your hopes up again!

The 2005 / 2006 basketball team just got smaller........... again. It's official - Austin Jackson gave up a sport he loved for another he loves. He signed with the Evil Empire - the New York Yankees..... So where does that leave us? Thin, that's where. Let's see:

Theodis Tarver

Mario West

Ra'Sean Dickey
Zam Fredrick
Anthony Morrow
Jeremis Smith
Keith Jones (walk-on)
Tyler Davis (walk-on)

D'Andre Bell
Lewis Clinch
Alade Aminu

That's 9 scholarship players. In terms of positioning, here's what we have:

1 Point Guard (Fredrick)
4 Scoring Guards / Wings (Morrow, Clinch, Bell, West)
2 Forwards (Smith, Aminu)
2 Centers (Dickey, Tarver)

Now, the reality is that this is not likely to be the final roster. Coach Hewitt is looking at a couple of options overseas to add players - both actually combo-guard types. I don't think there is a pure PG on the board to be had, but who knows. And I'm telling you - Coach Hewitt will do everything in his power to keep Lewis Clinch out of the PG spot.

From a recruiting standpoint for the 2006 class, the Jackets are still in the top 3 for Javaris Crittenton. While he's had an up-and-down summer when going head-to-head against the other top guards - the general concensus is that JC is the most physically athletic PG in his class. Lawson may be the fastest, but JC is truly more in the Jarrett Jack mold. What are the Jacket's chance of landing him? Hard to say. He's clearly our #1 target, but has made no indication that the Jackets lead. Wake Forest, one of his other top 3 schools, also has some other top PG's on the hook. If one of them commits to the Deacs, then we might just end up his clear best choice....... We'll just have to wait it out. After Lawson committed to UNC, our #2 target seemed to be Marques Johnson, but he committed to Tennessee. His quotes indicated that he was all about the playing time.................. In the meantime, the Jackets are still involved with a lot of other top PG's still on the board - Willie Kemp, Will Walker, Sherron Collins, and others....................... In the other spots, we're still involved with LOTS of guys like Lance Thomas, Curtis Kelly, Thaddeus Young, Alex Stephenson and many more..........

If you are getting antsy that recruiting seems to be passing us by, you're just going to have to grin and bare it. This is very typical of Coach Hewitt's style. He doesn't push for early committments. Just realize that we're only going to sign 4-5 guys and there are tons of names being thrown around. So as kids disappear from the board, don't worry too much - it just clears the mud a little from a GT standpoint. I think Alade Aminu was the only "early" committment that Coach Hewitt has ever had. So stay tuned.....................