Amile Jefferson: Prep Star Would Be Shot in the Arm NC State Needs

Brian MaziqueCorrespondent IIIMay 1, 2012

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McDonald's All-American Amile Jefferson has yet to decide where he'll play college basketball. He is reportedly deciding between Duke, Kentucky, NC State and Villanova.

While Duke and Kentucky are humongous programs and perennial contenders, NC State is building something special.

Building off their Sweet 16 appearance in the NCAA tournament, and boosted by the return of C.J. Leslie (who could have entered the NBA draft), this team already has a strong roster.

NC State has already had a successful recruiting run this season. ESPN has their class ranked ninth in the nation. It features the trio of Rodney Purvis, T.J. Warren and Tyler Lewis. Each is from North Carolina, and all are ESPN Top 100 players. 

Scott Wood, Lorenzo Brown and Richard Powell will all join Leslie as returning players. If you throw Jefferson into the mix, NC State is not only a threat to make serious noise in the ACC, but also nationally.

The Pennsylvania native is a strong rebounder, a solid defender and a very fluid athlete. Jefferson averaged 18 points and five rebounds per game this season.

He is the last of the highly coveted players remaining in the 2012 class. 

If the Wolfpack were to land him, it would clearly impact this class—but a high-profile signing this late would also do wonders for their reputation amongst the players in the class of 2013 as well.

Jefferson would be the first major recruit from outside North Carolina. This could make a statement that the Wolfpack aren't just a recruiting threat for local stars. If they are looking to compete with the Tar Heels and Blue Devils consistently, they must start getting major commitments like this one. 

Even if the Pennsylvania prep star goes elsewhere, The Wolfpack will be a solid team in 2012—but if they land Jefferson, they may be special.