Hey, remember how we talked about how Marquette was doing in ESPN's 2018 Top 60 recruiting rankings yesterday? Turns out that we completely missed that The World Wide Leader updated their 2017 rankings the day before that.
This is slightly more important than the 2018 rankings, as we've officially entered the part of the year where 2017 guys are going to start committing to schools in a hurry. After all, they're only 14 months away from starting college and, more importantly, only five months away from 2017 recruits being able to sign National Letters Of Intent. While we can't honestly recommend that anyone actually sign an NLI, the fact of the matter is that most players do ink their name to one.
The ESPN Top 100 for the Class of 2017 is still pretty wide open. Only 19 players have committed, with Austin Wiley (#19, going to Auburn) currently taking the spot as the highest ranked committed recruit. The SEC leads the six conferences with committed recruits with a total of five players, although two are going to Auburn and two are going to Florida. The Big East already has three players verbally committed for the fall of 2017, with two - Ty-Shon Alexander (#52) & Mitchell Ballock (#57) - headed to Creighton and one - Myles Cale (#65) - declaring for Seton Hall.
That brings us around to Marquette. As you can tell from that last sentence, MU doesn't have any verbal commits for the Class of 2017. Head coach Steve Wojciechowski currently has one open scholarship, and three more will open up after the 2016-17 season as Luke Fischer, Jajuan Johnson, and Katin Reinhardt finish their eligibility. If you combine 247's Targets page along with ESPN's Considering page, we get a giant pile of guys in the top 100 that Marquette is involved with on some level.
- Jordan Tucker, SF, #35
- Malik Williams, PF, #42
- Brandon Randolph, SG, #43
- Jermaine Samuels, SF, #59
- Terrence Lewis, SF, #66
- Xavier Tillman, PF, #69
- Nojel Eastern, SG, #74
- Ira Lee, PF, #78
- Derek Culver, PF, #79
- Alex Barcello, PG, #99
Xavier Tillman recently included Marquette in his top 19, and while I don't know how serious things are with him, Terrence Lewis attends Riverside University High School in Milwaukee. It's never a bad thing to bring in top 75 recruits from the city where you are.
It should probably not be a surprise to you that there's an awful lot of small forwards and power forwards on that list. Marquette's roster of guards for 2017 is pretty much set with Traci Carter, Haanif Cheatham, Markus Howard, Andrew Rowsey, and Duane Wilson. I'm not saying don't look into top 100 guys, but hey: no reason to actually put a lot of effort into it either, y'know?
It is a little bit surprising to not see anyone listed as a center on that list since Matt Heldt will be the only center on the roster by the time November 2017 rolls around. With that said, I'll happily take a roster full of 6'8" dudes who can dribble a little bit and shoot it a little bit, as long as they don't mind banging around in the post for rebounds as well.
There's also a number of players that I've seen Marquette get involved with that didn't make the top 100. That includes Theo John, a power forward from Minnesota, and Hasahn French, a power forward from New York, both of whom are in 247's top 200. It also includes forwards Makhtar Gueye, Jordan Nwora, and Ike Eke, none of whom even merit a ranking in the 247 Composite or internal systems. For giggles, I'll also point out that Phillip Flory is in the Class of 2017. Remember when Buzz Williams offered him a scholarship and he accepted it a day later? That was two years and 10 months ago.
We're in a quiet period for recruiting until after the Fourth of July, which means that coaches can't meet with players face to face. Odds are we won't get any recruiting news until the live periods start back up on July 5th. Still, keep your eyes and ears open for now....