After reclassifying and now emerging as one of the premier big men in the 2015 class, Caleb Swanigan has interested numerous suitors across the country. The 6’8” monster is a rare commodity in today’s basketball, as Swanigan dominates games with strength and skill in the paint.
Izzo can’t afford to let this one slip.
There is suddenly an overload of 2-guards in East Lansing, after transfers Eron Harris and Bryn Forbes joined the Spartans last month. Just days before, Izzo secured Kyle Ahrens from Versailles, Ohio, who is another shooting guard.
Backcourt depth or skill isn’t an issue. Lourawls Nairn is molding into a Mateen Cleaves-type point guard and Denzel Valentine has taken the stranglehold of the team under his recent captainship. Add those existing pieces to the three acquisitions that recently occurred, and that five-man rotation will emerge as one of the most talented in the country.
Alvin Ellis is another improving guard as well. Again, guard play will be at a high level upon the 2015 class’ arrival, so Izzo must focus his attention to future frontcourt contributors.
Swanigan won’t just contribute, though. The physically imposing power forward already boasts a more complete skill set than any of Sparty’s current big men.
He uses his robust frame to seal defenders under the hoop. Swanigan has fantastic touch around the rim, and his impressive mid-range game makes him a tough cover.
Currently, Branden Dawson occupies one forward slot. However, he will graduate after MSU’s 2014-15 campaign, and his counterparts haven’t exactly proved themselves as consistent contributors.
Matt Costello provided brief glimpses of potential and Gavin Schilling needs to work on his footwork and overall offensive package. Neither guy has emerged as a front-runner for the starting spot aside from Dawson.
That's where Swanigan comes in. The Fort Wayne, Indiana, product is already college-ready with his diverse skill set and daunting offensive build. His AAU teammate, Deyonta Davis, is already committed and has a realistic chance to start as a freshman in 2015.
The duo could form a fortifying frontcourt, as the AAU circuit continues to witness already. Swanigan is the most important recruit remaining in Izzo’s sights because of his developed skills coinciding with MSU’s lack of depth at the forward slots.
According to ESPN's rankings, Swanigan is the top rated out of Izzo's remaining targets. He is also the best fit.