Big East Basketball: Ranking the Best Schools in Recruiting

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistNovember 27, 2012

Big East Basketball: Ranking the Best Schools in Recruiting

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    The Big East conference is going through plenty of change in the next few years with the Syracuse Orange, Pittsburgh Panthers and Notre Dame Fighting Irish leaving for the ACC after this 2012-13 season and a multitude of teams coming in to replace those three and the West Virginia Mountaineers, who bolted for the Big 12. 

    One thing that remains a constant in the basketball-heavy conference is the recruiting process.

    No matter what teams are in the league, recruiting the nation's top players is a must for all of the 15 programs that currently reside in the Big East. 

    Here is the ranking of all 15 programs in the Big East in regards to their recruiting efforts for the class of 2013. 

15. Rutgers

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    Rutgers have not received any recruiting commitments for the 2013 class so far. 

    The Scarlet Knights have gone after top prospects like Rondae Jefferson, who committed to the Arizona Wildcats, but have failed to get any signatures from recruits. 

    If they are unable to sign any big names for the class of 2013, the good news for the Scarlet Knights is that they have a team that is mostly comprised of underclassmen. 

14. St. John's

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    The St. John's Red Storm had a strong recruiting class last season, but so far this year they have zero commitments from incoming players.

    It will be tough to match the group that head coach Steve Lavin brought in this season that included Chris Obekpa and Jakarr Simpson. 

    Just like Rutgers, the Johnnies have a young roster and could go a season without having any star recruits. 

13. DePaul

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    DePaul has been a much maligned program for years, and their 2-3 start to the season is the worst in the Big East so far. 

    The only high school commitment that the Blue Demons have at the moment is from point guard Billy Garrett, Jr. out of Chicago. 

    The Blue Demons also have two junior college players entering the program next season in center Forrest Robinson and forward Greg Sequele

12. Seton Hall

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    The Seton Hall Pirates have been mostly quiet on the recruiting front since they signed six players to the class of 2011. 

    Those players are now sophomores, with coach Kevin Willard and his staff back out on the recruiting trail again. 

    Point guard Aquille Carr is the only signing so far for the Pirates, and the Baltimore native turned down some big programs like Memphis, Texas and UConn to move up the I-95 and play for Seton Hall. 

11. Georgetown

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    The Georgetown Hoyas have had not made many big splashes in regards to recruiting their class of 2013 at the moment.

    Power forward Reggie Cameron is the only recruit to sign on the dotted line for the Hoyas so far. 

    The Hoyas could make a big splash in the recruiting market if they sign top center Dakari Johnson, who is also being courted by Florida, Kansas, Kentucky, Syracuse and Ohio State.  

10. Villanova

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    The Villanova Wildcats are not off to the best start this season at 3-3 due to a roster that is stacked with youth. 

    Adding to the Wildcats lineup next season will be power forward Kris Jenkins and small forward Josh Hart, who are both coming to Philadelphia from Washington, D.C.

    Jenkins will be the player relied on more in his freshman season with Maurice Sutton and Mouphtaou Yarou both graduating after 2012-13.  

9. Providence

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    In 2012, the Providence Friars brought in four guards to bolster their roster, including Ricky Ledo and Kris Dunn.

    For the 2013 recruiting class, the Friars are switching their focus to the forward position, with two signings as of now. 

    Philadelphia native Brandon Austin signed for the Friars over plenty of Philly-area schools, including Rutgers, Temple and Penn State. 

    The other small forward being brought into the fold at Providence is Rodney Bullock, who is a native of Hampton, Virginia.  

8. Cincinnati

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    Cincinnati will be given the task of replacing senior guard Cashmere Wright at the end of the 2012-13 season, but no high-quality recruits have been signed as of yet to take his spot. 

    The Bearcats do have four players signed to commitments at this point in time, but none of them are equal in talent to Wright. 

    Looking at the list of players with offers from Cincinnati, there are no true point guards that the Bearcats are actively pursuing. 

    With Wright leaving the program, it could be point guard by committee for the Bearcats next season. 

7. UConn

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    The UConn Huskies are in the rebuilding process under new head coach Kevin Ollie, and their roster is stacked with youth. 

    Whether or not Ollie is the coach next season is still up in the air, but one thing is for sure: The uncertainty around the coaching situation is affecting the quality of recruits coming into Storrs, Connecticut. 

    The one player who has committed to the Huskies so far is Kentan Facey, a power forward out of Long Island who had plenty of offers but decided to chose UConn. 

6. Pittsburgh

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    Pittsburgh have not made a huge splash in recruiting for the class of 2013, but they have made two quality signings. 

    Jamie Dixon was able to keep power forward Mike Young in his hometown as the 6'8" player chose the Panthers over Baylor and UConn, amongst others. 

    The other player who has committed to Pitt for the class of 2013 is Josh Newkirk, a point guard from Raleigh, North Carolina, an area dominated by the ACC. 

5. South Florida

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    South Florida has been one of the busiest Big East programs in the recruiting process this year. 

    Six players have already committed to the Bulls, who will lose five players to graduation after the 2012-13 season. 

    The biggest signing for the Bulls so far has been center John Egbunu, who is ranked seventh in the nation at the position by ESPN.

    Out of the other five recruits, four of them are like Egbunu and reside in the state of Florida. 

4. Marquette

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    The Marquette Golden Eagles are having a strong year in the recruiting department, with five players committing to coach Buzz Williams' program. 

    The biggest player to sign for the Golden Eagles in the class of 2013 is Deonte Burton, who is staying at home in Milwaukee to play his college ball.

    Another hometown product who will be playing for Marquette next season is point guard Duane Wilson, who is ranked 13th in his position by ESPN. 

    Joining Burton and Wilson as ESPN 100 prospects in the Marquette class of 2013 is JaJuan Johnson, a power forward out of Memphis. 

3. Notre Dame

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    Notre Dame's football team is having a season for the ages, and the basketball program will look to do the same in its final year in the Big East.

    The Fighting Irish are assembling a recruiting class that will help them contend for the ACC title in 2013-14, their first season in the conference. 

    The top signing for coach Mike Brey's team so far is Demetrius Jackson, rated the fourth best point guard by ESPN. 

    The two other ESPN 100 recruits making South Bend, Illinois their home for the next four years are shooting guard Steve Vasturia and small forward V.J. Beachem.

2. Louisville

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    Louisville is poised to have a very successful 2012-13 season, but the Cardinals are already looking to the future for players to replace Peyton Siva and potentially Russ Smith, if he leaves for the NBA.

    The next great guard in the Cardinals program could be Raleigh, North Carolina native Anton Gill, who is listed as the 10th best shooting guard in the nation by ESPN.

    The second star recruit to join Rick Pitino and the Cardinals is Omaha, Nebraska native Akoy Agau, who is also ranked in the ESPN 100. 

1. Syracuse

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    Syracuse is bringing another solid recruiting class to upstate New York to become the first four-year players for the Orange in the ACC.

    The recruiting class is led by power forward Tyler Roberson, who chose the Orange over Kansas and Villanova. 

    Joining Roberson in the top-notch recruiting class being brought in by coach Jim Boeheim is point guard Tyler Ennis, who comes to the Orange from Canada. 

    It may not be Boeheim's best recruiting class in his tenure at Syracuse, but it is the best one of the 15 current teams in the Big East.