College basketball's early signing period begins Wednesday and runs through Nov. 21, giving Class of 2013 prospects an initial opportunity to make college decisions official (unless, of course, the head coach leaves, they are granted a release and re-open their recruitment in the spring).
For many seniors, this week means the end of an exhausting recruiting process and a chance to focus on their final season of high school basketball. Others will wait until the late signing period, which runs from April 17 to May 15.
Programs in the hunt for elite talent are running out of options, as 82 of the players in the MaxPreps Class of 2013 Top 100
have delivered verbal commitments. Several game-changers are still on the board, however, as seven of the Top 25 – including No. 1 prospect Andrew Wiggins
– remain undecided.
Here's a look at a few of the key questions heading into Wednesday:Will top prospect Andrew Wiggins decide early?
Short answer – no.
A month ago, Wiggins – a 6-foot-7 wing unanimously regarded as the world's
No. 1 amateur prospect – wasn't even sure which class he was in. Ultimately, the Huntington Prep (W.Va.)
star decided to fast track his promising basketball career and skip ahead from 2014 to 2013.
But that left him behind the curve in terms of picking a school. Kentucky, which Huntington Prep head coach Rob Fulford indicated was an early favorite, is already well-stocked at the guard and wing spots with twins Aaron
and Andrew Harrison
and versatile James Young
– all Top 10 prospects.
That makes Lexington seem an unlikely destination (though who knows when it comes to John Calipari's recruiting prowess) and Kansas, North Carolina, Ohio State and Syracuse have joined his father's alma mater, Florida State, in the chase for his services.What about early decisions for fellow elite prospects Julius Randle, Aaron Gordon and Jabari Parker?
No, no and maybe.
Randle hasn't wavered from targeting the spring for his final decision. Florida, Kansas, Kentucky, North Carolina State, Oklahoma and Texas are in the mix for the 6-8 power forward, ranked No. 4 in the MaxPreps Class of 2013 Top 100.
Similar to Randle, Gordon looks to be a spring decision and his coach at Archbishop Mitty (San Jose, Calif.)
confirmed that in a recent interview with MaxPreps. Arizona, Kansas, Kentucky, Oregon and Washington are battling for the No. 5 overall senior.
Parker's timetable isn't quite as clear. He's knocking out official visits this month with Brigham Young, Duke, Florida, Michigan State and Stanford hoping to land a commitment from him sometime after the Nov. 21 deadline for the early signing period.Which program has made the biggest move since the last top recruiting classes update Oct. 11?
Memphis (Austin Nichols
), UCLA (Noah Allen
) and Illinois (Austin Colbert
) have all improved their stock with key commitments. But Indiana is the clear winner in this category after receiving pledges from versatile forward Noah Vonleh
(No. 7 in MaxPreps Class of 2013 Top 100) over the weekend and ultra-athletic wing Troy Williams
(No. 36) in late October.Where does recently reclassified Dakari Johnson fit into the MaxPreps Class of 2013 Top 100?
Look for Johnson, a 6-10, 250-pound center, to slot in at No. 9, one spot ahead of Montverde Academy (Fla.)
teammate Kasey Hill
. According to a press release distributed by the school, Florida, Georgetown, Kansas, Kentucky, Ohio State and Syracuse are at the forefront of his recruitment.Can anybody challenge Kentucky for the No. 1 spot?
Not likely. Florida would certainly be in the conversation if it could somehow land Parker and Randle, but that's a longshot. The Gators currently have commitments from the aforementioned Hill and 6-9 forward Chris Walker
.Which program outside the major conferences is putting together a big recruiting class?
While much of the attention surrounding Brigham Young's recruiting efforts has centered around the pursuit of Parker, the Cougars already have a very solid five-man class in place. The headliners are Lone Peak (Highland, Utah)
teammates Nick Emery
and Eric Mika
.Watch more videos of Huntington Prep basketball