10 CBB Programs Who Are Screwed in Class of 2019 Recruiting Window

Joel Reuter@JoelReuterBRFeatured ColumnistMarch 5, 2019

10 CBB Programs Who Are Screwed in Class of 2019 Recruiting Window

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    Grant Halverson/Getty Images

    Every team goes into the recruiting cycle with different expectations.

    For blue blood programs like Duke and Kentucky, it's a battle for the nation's top high school talent, and anything short of a class full of top-100 recruits is unacceptable.

    For mid-major upstarts like Buffalo and Nevada, the goal is sustained high-level success, with Gonzaga serving as the ultimate example of what could be.

    Even with those varying levels of expectation, every school is susceptible to some level of disappointment.

    We've highlighted 10 college basketball programs who have missed the mark during the 2019 recruiting cycle, with a healthy mix of top-tier and mid-level programs.


1 of 10

    Makai Mason
    Makai MasonChris Covatta/Getty Images

    National Rank: 108

    Commits: F Jordan Turner (3-star, No. 172)

    "Warm" Targets: G Harlond Beverly (4-star, No. 82) 

    Graduating Seniors: G Makai Mason (31.6 MPG, 14.4 PPG); G King McClure (27.8 MPG, 9.4 PPG)

    After a string of four straight trips to the NCAA tournament was snapped with a disappointing 19-15 season a year ago, Baylor has quickly returned to relevance.

    The Bears sit at No. 34 in the NET rankings, and with four Quadrant 1 wins and eight Quadrant 2 wins, they're in great shape to again be a part of the tournament field.

    The turnaround could be short-lived, though. Leading scorer Makai Mason and fellow starter King McClure are both set to graduate, and 3-star wing Jordan Turner makes up their one-man recruiting class.

    Landing 4-star combo guard Harlond Beverly would go a long way.

    However, all five of his crystal-ball predictions have gone to Michigan State, and fellow Big Ten blue blood Indiana is also in the mix.

    As it stands, the Bears will be relying heavily on the improvement of freshman Jared Butler and sophomores Tristan Clark and Mario Kegler to stay afloat in the Big 12 next season. Clark is currently recovering from season-ending knee surgery.


2 of 10

    C.J. Massinburg
    C.J. MassinburgJustin Casterline/Getty Images

    National Rank: 161

    Commits: F Andre Allen (2-star, No. 19 JUCO); G Durey Caldwell (2-star, No. 25 JUCO); F James Rojas (2-star, No. 26 JUCO)

    "Warm" Targets: C Raymond Hawkins (3-star, No. 175)

    Graduating Seniors: G CJ Massinburg (32.1 MPG, 18.7 PPG); F Nick Perkins (25.8 MPG, 14.4 PPG); G Jeremy Harris (31.0 MPG, 13.0 PPG); G Dontay Caruthers (22.5 MPG, 9.1 PPG); F Montell McRae (16.1 MPG, 6.3 PPG)

    Buffalo has long relied on the JUCO pipeline.

    However, it sounds like coach Nate Oats was hoping the team would be able to parlay its recent success into more competitive recruiting at the high school level.

    "I think some kids still act like they might be above Buffalo," Oats told Jason Wolf of the Buffalo News. "Well, OK, we're ranked 14th in the country. Do you have a scholarship offer from the 13 teams above us? ... We're to the level now where unless you're going to a Kansas, a Duke, a Kentucky, if you're going to one of the true blue bloods, yeah, I get it. But anything other than that, I feel like we can compete with the rest of them."

    That reads like a coach who's frustrated he wasn't able to land a few blue-chip recruits.

    Instead, the Bulls will rely on a trio of 2-star JUCO additions to help ease the loss of five seniors, including leading-scorer CJ Massinburg.


3 of 10

    Dedric Lawson
    Dedric LawsonEd Zurga/Getty Images

    National Rank: 55

    Commits: G Issac McBride (4-star, No. 112); F Christian Braun (4-star, No. 127)

    "Warm" Targets: F Matthew Hurt (5-star, No. 8); F Precious Achiuwa (5-star, No. 13); G Cassius Stanley (4-star, No. 29); F Tristan Enaruna (4-star, No. 79)

    Graduating SeniorsG Lagerald Vick (33.0 MPG, 14.1 PPG)

    Potential Early Entrants: F Dedric Lawson (32.8 MPG, 19.0 PPG, 10.4 RPG)

    Not since 2012 has Kansas failed to bring a 5-star freshman onto campus.

    That year really deserves an asterisk, too, as Perry Ellis was the No. 32 recruit and the sixth-highest-rated 4-star in the nation.

    This year, Bill Self has yet to land a commitment from a player ranked inside the top 100 in the 2019 class, and the fact that he's used scholarships on a pair of good-not-great recruits speaks to the issues he's had on the recruiting trail.

    A quick look at the team's 247Sports recruiting page shows 30 players the Jayhawks offered a scholarship to who have already committed elsewhere.

    They're still in the mix for several top-tier recruits and appear to be the favorites Hurt. Still, this isn't going to be the same bumper crop of freshman talent we've seen at Kansas in recent years.


4 of 10

    Markus Howard
    Markus HowardQuinn Harris/Getty Images

    National Rank: 136

    Commits: G Dexter Akanno (3-star, No. 352)

    "Warm" Targets: None

    Graduating Seniors: Joseph Chartouny (16.4 MPG, 3.3 PPG), Matt Heldt (7.1 MPG, 0.9 PPG)

    Potential Early Entrants: G Markus Howard (33.9 MPG, 25.5 PPG)

    While Marquette does not stand to lose any impact talent to graduation, it could be dealt a major blow if leading scorer Markus Howard heads to the NBA.

    Regardless, this year has been a disappointing halt to some recruiting momentum.

    Last year, the Golden Eagles signed 4-star and No. 52 recruit Joey Hauser. Two years ago, they had the No. 59 recruiting class in the country. Three years ago, they were No. 22 with three 4-stars, including Howard. Four years ago, they were No. 12 with 5-star and No. 8 recruit Henry Ellenson.

    Losing Howard and bringing in a sub-100 recruiting class would be a tough blow to the program, especially given the success the 23-6 Golden Eagles have enjoyed this season.

    Right now, they don't even have any outstanding scholarship offers.


5 of 10

    Jordan Murphy
    Jordan MurphyRich Schultz/Getty Images

    National Rank: 102

    Commits: G Tre Williams (4-star, No. 109)

    "Warm Targets": F Matthew Hurt (5-star, No. 8); F Myron Gardner (3-star, No. 213)

    Graduating Seniors: F Jordan Murphy (30.9 MPG, 14.6 PPG, 11.7 RPG); G Dupree McBrayer (31.0 MPG, 9.1 PPG), C Matz Stockman (9.6 MPG, 2.7 PPG)

    Even with 6'10" freshman Daniel Oturu showing major upside, Minnesota will have a glaring hole in the paint next season when double-double machine Jordan Murphy graduates. The Golden Gophers will also have to replace three-year starter Dupree McBrayer in the lineup.

    Signing 4-star guard Tre Williams should help bolster the guard rotation, but they've yet to find any frontcourt help. Further adding to the need for size is the departure of 7'0" center Matz Stockman, who chips in 9.6 minutes per game.

    Minnesota appears to be all-in on landing Matthew Hurt, whose brother Michael is a junior forward on the team.

    Good luck with that.

    That 5-star big man and No. 8 recruiting in the country has offers from Kansas, Duke, Kentucky, North Carolina and others. The Jayhawks current hold nine of his 18 crystal-ball predictions, while Minnesota has garnered none.


6 of 10

    Caleb Martin
    Caleb MartinEthan Miller/Getty Images

    National Rank: 121

    Commits: F Eric Parrish (3-star, No. 5 JUCO); F Shamiel Stevenson (transfer from Pitt)

    "Warm" Targets: F Emmanuel Taban (3-star, No. 190); F Kenyon Martin (3-star, No. 233)

    Graduating Seniors: F Caleb Martin (33.9 MPG, 19.6 PPG); F Jordan Caroline (35.2 MPG, 18.0 PPG); F Cody Martin (33.9 MPG, 11.3 PPG); F Tre'Shawn Thurman (25.4 MPG, 7.8 PPG); F Trey Porter (17.0 MPG, 7.2 PPG); G Corey Henson (13.2 MPG, 3.2 PPG)

    Nevada is in the midst of a stellar 26-3 season and looks poised to make some serious noise during March Madness, but with five senior starters, there's a clear expiration date on this roster.

    Five-star freshman Jordan Brown (10.8 MPG, 3.3 PPG) will presumably step into a larger role next season, and three-point threat Jazz Johnson (28.1 MPG, 10.7 PPG, 43.0 3PT%) will also return, but there's a lot of minutes to fill.

    Eric Parrish is one of the better JUCO players in the class, and 6'6", 245-pound Shamiel Stevenson will be eligible after averaging 8.5 points and 4.4 rebounds as a freshman at Pitt.

    Still, after landing a 5-star recruit last recruiting cycle, this has been a disappointing year for the Wolf Pack.

North Carolina

7 of 10

    Luke Maye
    Luke MayeLance King/Getty Images

    National Rank: 48

    Commits: C Armando Bacot (5-star, No. 21); G Jeremiah Francis (3-star, No. 183)

    "Warm" Targets: G Cole Anthony (5-star, No. 4), F Matthew Hurt (5-star, No. 8), F Precious Achiuwa (5-star, No. 13); F Keion Brooks (5-star, No. 23)

    Graduating Seniors: G Cameron Johnson (29.2 MPG, 16.8 PPG), F Luke Maye (30.6 MPG, 14.8 PPG); G Kenny Williams (29.1 MPG, 8.5 PPG)

    Potential Early Entrants: G Coby White (27.2 MPG, 16.4 PPG); F Nassir Little (18.4 MPG, 9.6 PPG)

    North Carolina could lose their top five scorers from this year's team.

    Cameron Johnson, Luke Maye and Kenny Williams are all seniors, while freshmen Coby White (No. 16) and Nassir Little (No. 29) are both ranked as first-round prospects in the latest big board from B/R's Jonathan Wasserman.

    Have they done enough to prepare for such a mass exodus?

    While they're technically still in the hunt for four 5-star recruits, Matthew Hurt (Kansas/Duke), Precious Achiuwa (UConn) and Keion Brooks (Kentucky/Indiana) all appear to be leaning elsewhere.

    Even if they land No. 4 recruit Cole Anthony—they hold six of nine crystal-ball predictions thus far, with the other three going to Oregon—to join 5-star big man Armando Bacot, the Tar Heels are still looking at a net loss talent-wise.

South Carolina

8 of 10

    Christian Silva
    Christian SilvaJoe Robbins/Getty Images

    National Rank: 72

    Commits: G Trae Hannibal (3-star, No. 216); F Wildens Leveque (3-star, No. 335); F Trey Anderson (2-star, No. 446)

    "Warm" Targets: F Christian Brown (4-star, No. 61)

    Graduating SeniorsF Chris Silva (25.7 MPG, 14.2 PPG); Hassani Gravett (28.9 MPG, 11.4 PPG); Tre Campbell (25.9 MPG, 7.0 PPG)

    After a respectable 55th-ranked recruiting class in 2018, it looked like coach Frank Martin was finally starting to make some progress on rebuilding the South Carolina basketball program.

    There's no A.J. Lawson in this year's haul, though.

    Instead, the Gamecocks have settled for a trio of recruits ranked outside the top 200 nationally, with little on the horizon unless they can hit on their pursuit of Oak Hill Academy 4-star Christian Brown.

    The 6'6" forward looks like a safe bet to land at NC State, though, with eight of his 12 crystal-ball predictions going in that direction and none going to the Gamecocks.


9 of 10

    Shizz Alston Jr.
    Shizz Alston Jr.Michael Wyke/Associated Press

    National Rank: 143

    Commits: G Damian Dunn (3-star, No. 387) 

    "Warm" Targets: G Nah'shon Hyland (3-star, No. 333)

    Graduating SeniorsShizz Alston Jr. (36.7 MPG, 19.1 PPG, 5.2 APG); Ernest Aflakpui (21.7 MPG, 5.7 PPG)

    Temple appears to be headed for the NCAA tournament after making the field just once in the past five seasons.

    However, this season's success has not provided much of a boost for coach Fran Dunphy on the recruiting trail.

    With starting point guard and leading scorer Shizz Alston Jr. and starting center and leading rebounder Ernest Aflakpui both set to graduate, there will be major minutes and production to replace.

    So far, 3-star guard Damian Dunn is their only signing for the 2019 class.

    That could mean 6'10" sophomore Justyn Hamilton (12.5 MPG, 3.9 PPG) and 6'11" junior Damion Moore (10.4 MPG, 3.0 PPG) will be forced into significantly larger roles to fill the void down low.


10 of 10

    Ethan Happ
    Ethan HappAndy Manis/Associated Press

    National Rank: 112

    Commits: F Tyler Wahl (3-star, No. 185); C Micah Potter (transfer from Ohio State) 

    "Warm Targets": None

    Graduating SeniorsF Ethan Happ (32.2 MPG, 17.8 PPG, 10.1 RPG); G Khalil Iverson (23.6 MPG, 5.7 PPG)

    Replacing a player like Ethan Happ is borderline impossible.

    For Wisconsin to succeed next season, someone from the sophomore trio of D'Mitrik Trice (12.3 PPG), Brad Davison (11.0 PPG) and Nate Reuvers (8.2 PPG) will need to take a huge step forward offensively, and Ohio State transfer Micah Potter will need to make an immediate impact down low.

    There was a time when the Badgers were major players on the recruiting scene, and landing an impact freshman to help ease the loss of their senior star would have been a realistic hope in another era.

    Those days have passed, though, and they're left with a class that ranks outside the top 100 with two senior starters set to depart.


    All stats courtesy of Sports Reference, while recruiting rankings come via 247Sports composite.


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