Tony Barbee pulled off arguably his biggest recruiting coup at Auburn on Thursday as Top 100 point guard Tahj Shamsid-Deen
of Columbia (Decatur, Ga.)
gave the third-year head coach a verbal commitment.
5-foot-9 and 165 pounds, the attention Shamsid-Deen has received on the recruiting circuit hasn't matched his success with Dr. Phil McCrary's Columbia Eagles – despite posting 15.7 points and 3.8 assists per outing in Nike's Elite Youth Basketball League last summer. He is ranked No. 91 in the MaxPreps Class of 2013 Top 100.
"He's probably one of the Top 10 players in the country," said Aljami Durham, Shamsid-Deen's club coach with the Southern Stampede. "We've played every top AAU team in the country and he's given every last one of those teams numbers. He has a huge heart and can flat out just play."
With the diminutive floor general at the controls, Columbia has won three-straight Class AAA state titles and compiled a 90-9 record during that span. The 2011-12 Eagles went 31-1 and finished the season ranked No. 10 nationally.
According to Durham, Auburn won out over Richmond for the two-time Atlanta Journal-Constitution Class AAA Player of the Year. Butler was also in the mix and Northwestern and UCLA gave Shamsid-Deen a long look over the summer.
"They are going to put the ball in his hands as a freshman and let him play," Durham said of the Tigers.
Barbee has recruited the state of Georgia impressively since taking over at Auburn, signing Shaquille Johnson of Milton and Jordan Price of Southwest DeKalb in the 2012 class and receiving Clemson transfer and Fayette County native Noel Johnson.