On Sunday evening, Class of 2019 prospect DJ Carton trimmed his recruiting list from six teams to three: Indiana, Michigan, and Ohio State. The three he knocked out of consideration? Iowa, his home state squad, Xavier, and YOUR Marquette Golden Eagles.
247 Sports lists Carton as the #24 player in the country in their Composite system. He’s the second best point guard in the class of 2019 and the best player in the state of Iowa. Carton is the third top 50 prospect in this recruiting class to include Marquette in a cutdown list before eventually turning away from the Golden Eagles, and the second to do so since May 1st. Jalen Wilson (#31) made a cutdown list on May 7th before committing to Michigan on May 30th. You may or may not remember De’Vion Harmon (#40) putting MU in his final five last October before quickly committing to Oklahoma less than two weeks later.
With Carton off the board, that brings us around to wondering what’s next for head coach Steve Wojciechowski and his staff for the class of 2019. With the fall signing period approximately four months away, Marquette has no commitments for 2019. Now, this isn’t the worst thing in the world. After all, Joey Hauser didn’t commit to Marquette until July 24th of last year, and the Golden Eagles were still chasing after Quentin Grimes until he committed to Kansas on November 15th. To go another year back, Theo John and Jamal Cain didn’t commit to Marquette until September, and Greg Elliott didn’t even get an offer until January.
In other words, there’s no reason to panic or anything like that.
In terms of the guys that Wojo may be after, well, that’s not really that important of an issue, either. Let me drop in the scholarship chart here to give you a visual of what I’m talking about.
Compare the 2018-19 and 2019-20 columns. There’s not going to be a lot of roster change in terms of minutes played that’s going to change for the fall of 2019. Matt Heldt’s departure will help free up some of the front court log jam, and the plan, I presume, would be for Koby McEwen to essentially pick up where Joseph Chartouny leaves off. In other words, unless you’re a top 50 prospect like Carton, there might not be that much in terms of playing time available for freshmen in 2019-20.
Thus, it might not be that important to make sure that there’s two impact new guys taking up those two available spots.
The names to watch, I think, are Seth Lundy, Jalen Gaffney, James Bishop, Mario McKinney Samuell Williamson, and Rocket Watts. The first three have picked up scholarship offers from Marquette since the first of the year, so they seem to be a bit higher on the priority list as recent-ish additions. That has a bit of higher emphasis for Lundy and Gaffney, who were offered scholarships since May 1st.
McKinney’s offer came in August of 2017, but Wojo did visit with him since the MU season ended. Williamson was visited by Wojo in April and also made a recent unofficial visit to Marquette. Watts is the most high profile name left on the board for Marquette, ranking #48 in the class of 2019. His scholarship offer came back in April of 2017, and he did earn a home visit from Wojo three months ago. Watts came up playing for the same club team as current Golden Eagles Jamal Cain, Ike Eke, and Greg Elliott, so he would have to be very familiar with the situation in Milwaukee.