Author's Note: November 11, 2011. I have slightly edited the article due to additions to the recruiting class as well as the recent signings that took place relating to this great recruiting class.
With the recent addition of Tyler Cavanaugh to the Wake Forest recruiting Class of 2012, it really looks like the chips are starting to fall into place on what could be a very good year for recruiting.
First off, let's consider this. Wake Forest currently only has eight players on scholarship, nine if you count Ty Walker, who has been suspended for half the season. In NCAA Division I men's basketball, each team can have up to 13 scholarships. Take into account that Nikita Mescheriakov and Ty Walker are both seniors and suddenly you have six scholarships that are available for use in the coming year.
Now, let's look at who Coach Bzdelik has gotten commitments out of:
Tyler Cavanaugh: The most recent of the signings, Tyler is a rapidly improving player according to most sources. At 6-8, he would provide immediate help in the post, as currently the only two players who will be on the team now who will still be in 2012 in the PF/C category are Carson Desrosiers and Travis McKie.
He's a three-star prospect on both Rivals and ESPN. It is likely his ranking will improve though, as he dominated AAU this past summer.
Andre Washington: Ranked as the 23rd best center in the 2012 recruiting class, this young commit will almost certainly see immediate action as he, like Tyler, will be essential to the Wake Forest team. He might only be 6-10, undersized for a center; the word is that he plays physically and may create another post threat for the offense.
Aaron Rountree: While he has a good rating on ESPN a 90, it does cause some worry that he was only given offers by two major schools: Wake and Colorado. I've heard that he has real strength problems, which reminds me a little of Carson Desrosiers from last season. Overall, Rountree appears to be a solid player and could definitely work well coming off the bench his first year in.
Codi Miller-McIntyre: Miller-McIntyre is without a doubt the top prospect in Wake Forest's recruiting class. From what I've discovered about his play, it looks like he's a good shooter and a decent passer. In those ways, he is almost like CJ Harris. He will benefit from Harris being able to teach him and help him to develop before he graduates.
Arnaud Moto: Moto is the second best prospect on this list, and is almost equal to Miller-McIntyre. Moto is a great small forward and chose Wake over offers from Vanderbilt, Florida, Miami, and Virginia Tech. He is an athletic small forward who will play mostly on the wing, and he should be able to help significantly on creating a defensive and offensive presence beyond the arc. This will help win playing teams that like to exploit the three point line (e.g. Duke).
Devin Thomas: Thomas is an undersized power forward at 6'7" but what he lacks in size he makes up for in post play. This is very critical on a team without an established post presence. Ideally, Desroisers and McKie would play more from the mid-range game on offense which would allow Thomas to be the force inside. Thomas ties together a great recruiting class that will provide Wake with help at every problem that they currently have on offense and defense.
Overall, Bzdelik has put this good recruiting class together. Yeah, it's not rated as high as the recruiting class of a few years back with Aminu, Woods, and Walker, but all those guys are either gone or suspended, so this class might end up paying better dividends for the program.
I would expect that these players will fit into the style of play and probably will be able to return Wake Forest at least to mediocrity in the ACC, but we'll have to see. I know it's been rough for most Wake fans out there having to watch last year's team continuously lose, but look forward to the future with hope, knowing that success might not be that far off.
Photo Courtesy of bloggersodear.com