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RECRUITING NOTEBOOK (2/5/2013): CINCINNATI PICKS UP BIG COMMITMENT
by Alex Schwartz
Several high-major programs landed commitments in the past week, including a couple from the Big East. That includes a program from the Midwest coming into the New York metro area to land a top 25 recruit.
Jermaine Lawrence, a New York native who attends Pope John XXIII (NJ), popped to Cincinnati, per his Tumblr account. Lawrence, a 6-foot-9 power forward, is ranked No. 24 in the NBE Sports Class of 2013 Post-July Top 125.
Lawrence selected the Bearcats over St. John’s and UNLV. He is the fifth member of Cincinnati’s 2013 recruiting class and is a significant addition.
RJ Curington of Oak Hill Academy (VA) pledged to DePaul, according to Brian Snow of Scout.com. A 6-foot-5 shooting guard, Curington was among the better available players in the nation in the class of 2013 and is a nice late pickup for the Blue Demons.
Scout.com’s Josh Gershon had the news that Dion Wade of Findlay Prep (NV) came off the board to Auburn. A 6-foot-7 small forward, Wade is the second player from Findlay Prep in the class of 2013 to pick the Tigers. The other is Benas Griciunas, a 6-foot-10 power forward.
Jalil Abdul-Bassit, a JuCo prospect from North Idaho College (ID), committed to Oregon, in news that looks to have been first reported by Recruit Wazzu. Abdul-Bassit is a 6-foot-4 class of 2013 shooting guard.
Larry Lewis, who at one point was committed to USC as a member of the 2012 class, is now headed to UT-San Antonio, per the Westwind Prep (AZ) Twitter account. Lewis, who is in a post-graduate year at Westwind Prep and is now a 2013 prospect, is a 6-foot-3 combo guard.
According to Alex Kline of TheRecruitScoop.com, Dylan Haines has popped to Boston University. Haines is a 6-foot-11 center from St. Thomas More (CT). Now a class of 2013 prospect in a post-grad year, he is a graduate of Christian Brothers Academy (Syracuse, NY).
Joe Fagan of Bishop Chatard (IN) is headed to Indiana as a preferred walk-on, per Kyle Neddenriep of the Indianapolis Star. Fagan is a 6-foot-4 combo guard in the class of 2013.
Aaron Gordon, ranked No. 2 in the NBE Sports 2013 Top 125, has added Oregon to his list of finalists, according to John Henry Smith of Comcast SportsNet Bay Area. A 6-foot-8 power forward from Archbishop Mitty (CA), Gordon is an elite level prospect. The other schools under consideration are Arizona, Kentucky and Washington.
LJ Westbrook will be heading to Oregon State as a 2014 recruit instead of being a part of the 2013 class, per Alex Kline. He reported that Westbrook, a 6-foot-3 point guard from North Salem (OR), will be heading to Lee Academy (ME) for a post-graduate year before matriculating to Corvallis, Ore.
Grant Taylor of The Herald-Dispatch reported that Austin Grandstaff has transferred from Huntington Prep (WV) to Plano West (TX). Grandstaff, class of 2015 prospect, transferred from Rockwall (TX) to Huntington Prep earlier this season, but was only there briefly. Grandstaff is a talented 6-foot-4 shooting guard.
After leaving Roselle Catholic (NJ), Isaiah Still is now attending The Patrick School (NJ), per Jay Gomes of NJHoops.com. Still is a quality 6-foot-5 class of 2015 shooting guard.
According to Adam Zagoria of ZagsBlog.com, St. Anthony’s (NJ) lost to St. Benedict’s (NJ) to break up its 83-game winning streak. The Friars had gone undefeated in each of the last two seasons.
MORE RECRUITING TIDBITS FROM NBE STAFF:
A big weekend at the National Prep School Invitational for Josh Hearlihy has led to a quick uptick in the recruitment of the post-grad 6-foot-7 forward from Northfield Mount Hermon. A 31-point performance on 13 of 17 shooting from the field in a win over Tilton showed a little bit of everything he could do. The former Utah-commit stuffed the stat sheet with 8 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals as he plays both ends of the floor. Pittsburgh and Maryland have recently inquired and schools like Old Dominion, Rice, UNC-Charlotte, Pepperdine and more are hoping the high majors stay at bay a little longer.
Kaleb Joseph continues to be a little under-appreciated nationally by most recruiting services, but expect that to change in time. He starred once again on the court this past weekend with Cushing Academy, getting the NPSI off on the right foot Thursday with a 15-point, 9-assist, 5-rebound performance. The 6-foot-2, Class of 2014 guard has recently added an offer from Pittsburgh and is seeing plenty of recruiting efforts from the likes of Providence, Syracuse, Tennessee and others.
Indiana took advantage of the great atmosphere that comes with ESPN Gameday and a top 5 battle on Saturday night in Bloomington versus Michigan by hosting some impressive recruits, including Theo Pinson, Phil Booth, Prentiss Nixon and Tyus Battle.
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