We have a new Golden Eagle to celebrate!
On Friday, Class of 2022 guard Chase Ross announced that he is committed to play for Marquette and head coach Shaka Smart. Ross, a 6’4”, 185 pound shooting guard, made his announcement on Instagram Live with Zach Schumaker.
MU NATION, I’M HERE pic.twitter.com/XBteosXrjZ— Chase (@dtx_ross) September 24, 2021
Ross first picked up an offer from Smart and his staff in the middle of July of this year. I don’t know where the relationship with Ross started there, but if he went from “got an offer” to “that’s the place for me” in just over two months, you’d have to guess the relationship dates back a little bit further than July. Ross was on an official visit to Marquette just two weeks ago, so this commitment didn’t come as much of a surprise.
Milwaukee, WI #notcommitted pic.twitter.com/pTa4dyv8Oz— Chase (@dtx_ross) September 12, 2021
Maybe even more so after Tom Crean decided to be super-Tom Crean-y while Ross was on his visit to Georgia following the visit to MU.
Athens, Ga #notcommitted pic.twitter.com/uV2eLpDEgh— Chase (@dtx_ross) September 19, 2021
Have you ever seen someone with a job that involves being on camera so often have less of an awareness of what they look like on camera?
Anyway, back to Chase Ross.
He’s not currently rated or ranked by the 247 Sports Composite system, although their internal system rates him as a three-star prospect. He’s the #40 combo guard in the country there and the fifth best prospect in the state of Massachusetts. That’s where he’s currently attending school at Cushing Academy, although Ross actually hails from the Dallas area. Ross is also listed as a three-star prospect by Rivals, and they do not have any national, state, or positional rankings for him. He doesn’t appear to have an ESPN prospect page at all, but because it appears that ESPN did away with their internal search option, I’m stuck relying on Google searches and those keep popping the page for former Eastern Kentucky offensive lineman Chase Ross.
If you’re slightly worried about Marquette taking on a commitment from a guy who appears to be flying very far under the recruiting radar.... well, I kind of talked about this when Ross got his offer from MU. It seems that Ross miiiight have been a 2021 prospect back when he was attending Plano West down in Texas. Then he ended up going to Cushing Academy, and he moved back a year. It happens, and that’s how you end up going a little bit under the radar because of the recruiting class change. Mix into that the fact that Cushing didn’t actually play very much organized hoops due to the pandemic, and that’s how both scouts and maybe college coaches didn’t get much of a chance to see Ross play and thus evaluate him properly. Fingers crossed that Shaka Smart knows how to evaluate a prospect for his system, and maybe, just maybe, the Golden Eagles have themselves a diamond in the rough here.
Ryan McMullen from ZagsBlog talked to Ross right around when Marquette made their offer to him, and here’s his one sentence thoughts on the Golden Eagles at the time:
“I like coach Shaka Smart and the program. I also love their style of play that they incorporate in their program.”
I always get slightly twitchy when I see recruits this past summer talking about Shaka Smart’s playing style in the present tense. Sure, Smart’s allowed to pitch kids on how he’s coached in the past, but right now, there’s no proof of concept as to what Shaka Smart Marquette Basketball actually looks like.
Brandon Jenkins over at 247 Sports talked to Ross in late July about his recruiting, and here’s what he said about Marquette:
“I talk to every coach on the coaching staff. We have a relationship where they treat me like family. I talk to them almost everyday. Shaka Smart offered me and said he likes how I carry myself and how I am overlooked.”
There’s not a lot of video out there that’s worth dropping in for Ross, which is too bad. The best I can do is this seven minute package on a dunk contest:
Ross does have a Hudl page that has a Season Recap video right at the top right now that will run you just over three minutes.
And now, the brand new scholarship chart.
With Darryl Morsell only spending one year in Milwaukee and maaaaaybe Greg Elliott wrapping things up in Milwaukee after this coming season, Marquette needs ballhandlers on the roster. We don’t know what we’re getting from all the new guys quite yet as well, which ratchets up the need to have multiple options in the backcourt if need be. That’s where Ross comes in, even with Sean Jones already committed to play for Smart.
That leaves Marquette with two possible open scholarship spots for the 2022-23 season, although if Elliott sticks around, one of them will have to go to him. Marquette appears to be very much in the mix for A.J. Casey, a top 70 forward out of Chicago. At this point, with just two and maybe only one spot left in the class and with Marquette not projecting to have any seniors in 2022-23, I think any remaining recruiting has to be for guys like Casey, clear top 100 or better prospects. No reason to take a flier on a guy when you can just bank a spot for 2023-24 anyway.
Of course, maybe Shaka Smart sees things differently, and maybe we’ll get some other news between now and the signing period in November?