It’s been a busy month on the recruiting trail for Travis Steele and new assistants Jonas Hayes and Ben Johnson. New offers are being handed out, players are committing, decommitting and the AAU circuit is well under way.
This looks like it will be a big class, which is likely to have five, or possibly even six, players.
About two months ago, I wrote about potential targets in the upcoming recruiting class. A lot has changed since then, and with the recent commitment of Elias King, a consensus four-star forward from Georgia, and the decommitment of Samari Curtis, a four-star guard from Ohio, now seems like a good time to see where things stand.
This includes players previously discussed in the last article as well as new targets who have emerged with the hiring of Hayes and Johnson.
Elias King, 6’7” SF, 4-Star, 97th in country
As mentioned above, King is Xavier’s most recent commit. He give the Musketeers a solid foundation going forward with Curtis, as the two seem to compliment each other. King is an excellent catch and shoot player on offense, with the length and IQ to be successful on defense.
King cited a few reasons as to why Xavier was the pick, with one being his relationship with the coaches. King was previously committed to Georgia, where Hayes was his main recruiter. When Georgia fired coach Mark Fox, King reopened his recruitment. When Hayes left for Xavier, he instantly became a priority recruit. As a result, King committed to Xavier.
Top Targets to Monitor
Samari Curtis, 6’4” CG, 4-Star, 91st in country
Curtis, a local product from Xenia, OH, can score in bunches. He has the ability to score through contact and has significantly improved his shooting stroke. He also made a significant jump in the rankings this spring after a strong showing in AAU.
Curtis decommitted last week with vitually no warning. Because of this, the likelihood of him choosing Xavier again is not very high. However, Steele has a long standing relationship with Curtis, and if he feels Curtis should be a Musketeer he’ll continue to push hard.
Zeke Nnaji, 6’10” PF, 3-Star, 179th in country
Nnaji is one of the biggest risers this spring, becoming a top 50 player by 247s own rankings. He also appears to be one of the top targets for Steele and company.
He’s flashed a complete offensive game this spring, hitting shots all over the court while also rebounding at a high level. Nnaji could be a tough get, with numerous programs now after him. However, Xavier still looks to be very much in the mix with him and have as real of a chance as anyone at landing him.
Armaan Franklin, 6’4” CG, 4-Star, 99th in country
Franklin had a rough spring, but he’s still one of the better guards in the class. He has good size, a decent shooting stroke and room to grow.
Steele has a long standing relationship with Franklin, and it seems as though Xavier is the school to beat right now. Anything can happen, but right now, Xavier looks to be in a good spot here.
Harlond Beverly, 6’4” CG, 4-Star, 58th in country
Perhaps the guard with the most potential among Xavier’s targets, Beverly is still battling inconsistencies on the court. His shot is developing, but when he’s hitting, he’s very difficult to guard. Beverly’s defense also appears to have taken a leap.
He’s had an unofficial visit to Xavier, and the Musketeers have been recruiting him for a long time. With Michigan State, Ohio State, Louisville and Purdue also pursuing him, he could be a difficult get. Xavier still looks to be a good spot, and this will be one to monitor throughout the summer.
Dontaie Allen, 6’6” SF, 3-Star, 207th in country
Allen is fairly new to the picture, as Xavier only offered him a few weeks ago. It is still relatively unknown where Xavier stands with him, but as the first high major school to offer him, they appear to be in a decent spot.
If his recruitment takes a while, odds are Xavier won’t land him. As a result, if he commits before the next evaluation period in July, it will likely be to Xavier. If he doesn’t, odds are he won’t end up a Musketeer.
Daniel Ramsey 6’8” PF, 4-Star, 98th in country
A former AAU teammate with Elias King, Xavier has been working its way into Ramsey’s top choices. Ramsey is athletic and has decent size on the interior.
He’s also a very good student who could have top academic schools after him soon, making Xavier’s chase tougher. However, Xavier has reportedly made a strong push this spring and gotten themselves squarely in the mix for Ramsey.
Jalen Thomas, 6’10” C, 4-Star, 90th in country
Thomas is a teammate of Beverly’s, so Xavier will be seeing a lot of Thomas during the next evaluation period. He’s developmental prospect at this point, but the upside is high. Xavier is also Thomas’ only high major offer at the moment.
Thomas is reportedly planning to make a visit to Xavier Sunday for a team canp, which would likely reaffirm Xavier as the lead in Thomas’ recruitment.
Other names to watch
Tyrell Terry, 6’3” PG, 4-Star, 80th in country
Similar to Ramsey, Terry is a top student and could be a difficult get because of it. Stanford appears to be the favorites for him now, and but Xavier could still have a play here if he doesn’t end up a Cardinal.
Update: Tyrell Terry committed to Stanford on June’s 10th.
Tray Jackson, 6’8” PF, 4-Star, 82nd in country
A new top-100 player, Jackson was only recently offered by Xavier, the one of the first high major schools to offer him. Jackson is currently getting a visit set up as well. He also holds an offer from Oklahoma. Jackson also has interest from Michigan State and Purdue, though they have no offered him yet.
Matthew Hurt, 6’9” PF, 5-Star, 4th in country
As expected, the in home visit with Steele went well, as they normally do. Though Xavier is still the long shot to land him, until he officially cuts Xavier from the list, he’s one player for which to watch.
DJ Carton, 6’2” PG, 4-Star, 26th in country
Similar to Hurt, Xavier is a long shot in Carton’s recruitment. Xavier is in his final six and is attempting to get a visit set up. However, they are still are among the bottom schools in his recruitment.
Brendan Tucker, 6’3” CG, 4-Star, 118th in country
A high volume scoring guard from Georgia, Tucker has a good relationship with Hayes, who recruited him while an assistant at Georgia. He also holds an offer from Clemson who could be tough to beat here.
Luke Anderson, 6’8” PF, 3-Star, 160th in country
Xavier looked to be in a good spot with Anderson for a while, but things seem to have cooled a bit in recent weeks. He also holds offers from Florida State and Georgia, who could give Xavier trouble if this recruitment continues drags out.
Jaylin Williams, 6’7” PF, 4-Star, 74th in country
Williams has a lot of interest from top schools other than Xavier, such as Georgia, Auburn and Louisville. Mike Pegues was Williams’ main recruiter at Xavier and has now taken over that role at Louisville, while Hayes has taken over that role at Xavier.
Quincy Guerrier, 6’7” SF, 4-Star, 126th in country
Guerrier has exploded on the recruiting scene recently, picking up 14 offers from high major programs since April 24th. Because of this, it is difficult to pinpoint exactly where Xavier stands here, but they could have a good shot.
Mason Gillis, 6’6” PF, 4-Star, 122nd in country
Gillis seems likely to end up at Purdue, and Butler and Ohio State also appear to be in the mix with him. He was one of Steele’s first stops in the recruiting period, but this may ultimately be a lost cause. He has plans to visit Xavier on June 11th, and more will likely be known after that.
Kira Lewis Jr., 6’3” PG, 4-Star, 89th in country
Just offered by Xavier on May 25th, it is currently unclear where the Musketeers currently stand with Lewis. Alabama seems like the current leader, with Kentucky also in the mix. However, the Wildcats still have not offered Lewis.
Dru Smith, 6’3” G, Transfer
The Evansville native and transfer committed to Missouri on April 29th.
MaCio Teague, 6’3” PG, Transfer
The Cincinnati product and UNC Ashville transfer committed to Baylor on April 30th.
*All measurements and composite rankings courtesy of 247Sports
*Rankings are accurate as of June 14th