Brad's not the only one who can roll out the ol' two viewpoints in one article gimmick. Get a load of this action.
The wheels have come off in recruiting
Think back to the beginning of summer: Xavier was in on Joey Brunk, Dylan Painter, Markelle Fultz, Kobi Simmons, Jaylen Barford, Xavier Simpson, Xavier Sneed... the list goes on and on of players who are very highly-regarded on the recruiting circuit and were meaningfully linked to the Musketeers. Now fast forward back to today: Brunk and Painter have committed to other Big East schools, Fultz fled to the West Coast, Simmons cancelled his official visit to Xavier, Barford committed to Arkansas, and neither player named Xavier wanted to play at Xavier.
I know that X has gotten commitments from a couple of top 100 players, but neither of them cracks ESPN's top 80. Fultz and Simmons in particular could have been program-changing players. Once you get that first guy in who spends a year or two in your colors and then starts cashing NBA checks, great recruits start noticing. Landing a couple of ESPN 100 guys is nice, but Brandon Randolph was an ESPN 100 guy. That didn't exactly carry us to the next level as a program, did it?
We're going to be fine
When has Xavier been as hot as they are right now in recruiting? The last ESPN 100 recruit to step on the floor for X was a fella by the name of Trevon Bluiett, who you might remember for his role as one of the team's most capable scorers last year, when he was a freshman. Coach Mack brought in a six-player class last year and then smartly split it four and two with a couple of redshirts. That class of London, Sumner, and Gates is looking pretty good, and don't forget that Xavier added transfer forward RaShid Gaston to come eligible along with Tyrique Jones and Quentin Goodin next season.
And besides, under the radar has always been Xavier's style. A deep, talented squad with experienced players is going to have a shot to make a run every March in a way that even the best one-and-done machines struggle to replicate. Coach Mack continues to turn our squad players into a higher caliber of squad players with every subsequent class. Sure it stings a little bit to be close to a couple of top ten guys only to have them end up elsewhere, but Xavier's recruiting profile is clearly on the rise. Like Dante Jackson loved to remind us, you can't get tired of the process.