Sometimes recruiting news comes from Instagram. Class of 2020 prospect AJ Hoggard used that platform to announce that he’ll be making his college choice public on Sunday, October 6th. Since late August, Hoggard has made visits to Providence, Ole Miss, Michigan State, and Florida, as well as YOUR Marquette Golden Eagles.
Hoggard is a 6’3”, 185 point point guard, according to his 247 Sports page. He’s from Wayne, Pennsylvania, which is essentially Villanova’s backyard, but he attends Huntington Prep in Huntington, West Virginia. He’s currently ranked #71 in the country by the 247 Sports Composite system. That makes him the #13 point guard in the Class of 2020 and the #2 player in the state of West Virginia. If you dial him back to his home state, he’d be the top prospect in Pennsylvania, just barely edging out #77 and former Marquette recruit Ethan Morton.
Since it’s been a few days since Hoggard declared his intention to announce, that means it’s safe to go peek at the 247 Sports Crystal Ball for insight. Not a single person has notched a prediction since Hoggard’s notification. Thus, with a big ol’ grain of salt attached, I point out that five people have picked Michigan State for Hoggard between late July and when he started taking his official visits.
That’s not terribly surprising. I think we can safely say that if you took Hoggard’s five visited schools and ranked them in terms of program reputation under their current head coach, or even over the last 10 years, Michigan State would be #1. Still, no picks since his declaration and none since he started on his official visits does throw a bit of doubt into the proceedings. Exhibit A: Zion Williamson.
Marquette was a relatively late entry to Hoggard’s recruitment. The Golden Eagles only offered him a scholarship back in late April of 2019, so to go from that point to getting an official visit in September is some pretty solid to good work by head coach Steve Wojciechowski and his staff.
As a point guard, AJ Hoggard would fill an obvious void in the Marquette roster for the 2020-21 roster. Markus Howard will be a senior in 2019-20, leaving question marks in his wake as to who would become the primary ballhandling guard for the Golden Eagles. Nothing against Koby McEwen, Greg Elliott, or Symir Torrence, but it never hurts to have multiple high level point guard types on your roster. That’s a lesson that Marquette has learned all too well over the past few seasons.
Even with Justin Lewis and Osasere Ighodaro committed, there’s still lots of space left on the 2020-21 Marquette roster. Depending on exactly what’s up with Tommy Gardiner’s elevation from walk-on to scholarship player, the Golden Eagles could still have as many as four open scholarships for November 2020. That’s a lot of space, and Hoggard would go a long way towards filling it up.
Here’s what the scholarship situation looks like right now.