It’s around the time of year when theÃ‚Â major recruiting services do their final rankings for the preceding class at the end of the spring signing period. True to form, both Scout.com and Rivals.com updated their services to reflect the changes brought on by the spring signing period.
The verdict is in: VCU has the CAA’s top class this year.Ã‚Â Recruiting guru Jerry Meyers at Rivals.com has 6’10 big man Juvonte Reddic as the CAA’s top recruit; he just missed the cut for the Rivals 150 and was the first one out according to Meyers. The reclassification of Vanderbilt-signee James Siakam from 2011 to 2010 bumped Reddic off a spot in the top 150, which Brian Rivals at Rivals.com said Reddic would be in strong consideration for in his write-up on Reddic’s commitment:
Reddic seems to be the headliner of the class having committed to VCU over final offers from Maryland, Oklahoma, and Mississippi with an early offer from Georgetown as well. Reddic will be the CAA’s top recruit when Rivals does its conference recruiting breakdown in the coming days.
Though Reddic did not crack the Rivals150 as many anticipated, it was not all bad as the updates brought good news regarding the rest of the class. Darrell Haley, Rob Brandenberg, and Toby Veal were all unranked prospects prior to the update and have now joined Reddic and 6’7 wing Reco McCarter as 3-star recruits! That gives VCU a 5-man 3-star class, the same number of 3-stars as the rest of the CAA combined. While star rankings mean about as much as the paper they are printed on, it is nice to see those involved in recruiting give such respect to the class Head Coach Shaka Smart has assembled.
Scout.com has also updated their recruiting rankings and while Reco McCarter was the CAA’s only Scout 3-star recruit (#38 SF) prior to the spring signing period, things changed in the latest update as Juvonte Reddic joined McCarter as a 3-star and the #35 C in the nation. This makes them the first consensus Scout/Rivals 3-star recruits since Joey Rodriguez and Ed Nixon signed with the Rams in 2007. National Director of Recruiting for Scout.com, Dave Telep has been highly complimentary of the class and says ‘it should be the talk of the league’ among other things in an interview by Adam Stern at the Commonwealth Times. It’s a great read as Telep comments on Brandenberg, Reddic, and Haley.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“They snatched a couple guys, manÃ¢â‚¬Â said Dave Telep, National Recruiting Director for Scout.com, a sports publishing company that focuses on recruiting. Ã¢â‚¬Å“I actually thought they were wasting their time with Reddic. I thought he was going to wind up going higher, so for them to pop Reddic was a big deal.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Shaka did really, really well,Ã¢â‚¬Â Telep said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“This is an Atlantic-10 recruiting class in the CAA, thatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s what it looks like to me. I think this is going to wind up being the talk of the league.Ã¢â‚¬Â
With this being the first class for which Shaka Smart was able to recruit players year-round (after having to scramble late last year in the wake of Anthony Grant’s and Ben Eblen’s departures to Alabama), it is clear that if there is one thing Shaka can do exceptionally well, it is recruit.Ã‚Â VCU Athletics released a highlight video of the Class of 2010 and if you could summarize it’s contents in one word, ‘athleticism’ comes to mind immediately. This is a fast, long, and athletic 5-man class that runs the floor well and should allow Shaka Smart to wreak his brand of ‘Havoc’ on the CAA.
In the coming days, I will be breaking down each member of the ‘Fab Five’ complete with rankings, scouting reports, video clips as well as interviews with a couple as well.
Over the past 4 years, VCU has been the CAA’s winningest program. This next class of VCU players will look to deliver on Shaka Smart’s pledge at his hiring press conference to ‘take VCU basketball to even greater heights’. The future is bright!