Hey y’all, I’ve been off the college basketball blogging grid for a bit as all my mental hoops space has been occupied by the NBA draft and free agency season. However, I am back and better than ever, ready to track down info on our potential future Tigers.
Ten days ago, the Team USA hosted workouts to decide the roster for the 2019 U-19 team. Many of the players who were trying out for the team are recruitment targets for coach Penny Hardaway at the University of Memphis.
These prospects include top tier players such as Cade Cunningham, Jalen Suggs, Walker Kessler, and Jalen Green.
The ever-helpful zagsblog.com had correspondent @JacobPolacheck on site at the workouts to assess the players and interview them about their recruitment status while providing us an update on where some of them are leaning as we near their college decisions.
Team USA Workout Interviews
Walker Kessler is a 6’11” center who has received an offer from Memphis and is currently ranked as a top 20 player in the class of 2020. According to his interview, he is interested in visiting Gonzaga, Duke, UNC, and Michigan.
Jalen Suggs is a combo guard who is currently ranked inside the top ten players in the class of 2020. He told Jacob that Gonzaga, Minnesota, and Marquette are the three schools who are currently leading the pack despite being friends with current Memphis Tiger and number one recruit James Wiseman.
Jalen Green visited Memphis and Florida State back in the fall and says that he will also visit Arizona, Kentucky, and Oregon.
Cade Cunningham is a player who many think could end up as the top ranked player in the class of 2020. The combo guard has Memphis in his top 10 list with plenty of the blue blood schools. Cunningham claims he will soon cut his list to a top 5.
Evan Daniels of 247Sports has Cade leaning towards OK State, and with that program hiring his brother it could be a sign of things to come.
In non-Team USA news, Memphis has reportedly reached out to Alden Applewhite of local Memphis high school Lausanne. This doesn’t mean that they have offered a scholarship, but just that Applewhite now gets added to the list of guys we are tracking for the future.
Currently, Applewhite is unranked in the 247Sports composite and has offers from both TCU and Ole Miss.
NBA Top 100 Camp
Also in recent weeks, dozens of players took part in the NBA Top 100 camp. It was there that one of the top point guards in the upcoming senior class, Daishen Nix, showed out among his peers.
Evan Daniels of 247Sports said he is the best passer that he has seen in high school basketball and named his as one of the top 10 performers at the camp.
Memphis is competing for the guard’s services along with schools like Kentucky, Arizona, and Washington. The distributing guard says that his recruitment is still currently wide open.
Looking a bit down the road to the class of 2021, Memphis fans will be please to know that forward Paolo Banchero was also listed as a top 10 performer at the event.
For those interested in rankings — if you read this far, I’m assuming that’s you — here are the updated ESPN top 100 players in the class of 2020.
If you are really interested in tracking the recruits who could find themselves playing in front of you at the FedExForum in the years to come, I have a Google Sheet database I am compiling that you may find useful. Shoot me a tweet or DM if you would like access to this sheet.
- Backdoor Cut (Ep 41) – Iggy saga, Team USA, Penny on the recruiting trail
- Theater In College Hoops (Ep. 26) — Starting 5: College Hoops Players on Our Football Team, Righteous Gemstones, EUROTRIP
- Tigers Recruiting: Fall recruiting period updates
Zak (@BarnBurnerBro) is a native Memphian who covers the Memphis Grizzlies, Tigers, and St. Louis Cardinals for The Barn. He spends his free time exploring breweries, restaurants, and leading the Ivan Rabb stan club.